Tread Gently: The voice of families from CaLD/NESB background living with a disability and child protection practices in Australia
Study into the impact of current child protection practices of the removal of children .
This study is being undertaken by NEDA (National Ethnic Disability Alliance) to highlight the issues encountered by those parents from a CaLD/NESB background who lives with a disability or have a child living with a disability and the child protection system in Australia. It is a study that examines the impact of the current child protection practice of the removal of children as the first measure by child protection authorities or the Family Court in Australia on parents and care givers.
The purpose of this study is to provide an understanding from the viewpoint of the parent or care giver of the impact child protection has on families from an NESB/CaLD background where a member parent or child lives with a disability. The aim of the survey is not questioning the basis of child protection legislation in Australia, but how child protection practice is undertaken. Often those who deal with families who are from different backgrounds or abilities are sometimes insensitive to the needs of these families.
The impact on many parents/caregivers who no longer are able to be directly with their child/ren has been one of the shame and loss of status, personal denigration of them as being in some way viewed as incompetent in their parenting skills. They also experience feelings of anger, grief, loss and ongoing trauma.
There are many children committed to the child protection system in Australia where the risk of harm is presumed that it may occur, therefore, as a cautionary measure the child is removed from the family. This approach disproportionately impacts on families who are experiencing some aspect of disadvantage by their ethnicity, mental health issues, disability, economic or indigenous status.
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