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Safety of children in care : measurement of harm Oranga Tamariki, Ministry for Children

Contributor(s): Oranga Tamariki, Ministry for Children.
Material type: materialTypeLabelBookPublisher: Wellington, New Zealand : Oranga Tamariki, Ministry for Children, 2018Description: electronic document (22 pages) ; PDF file.Subject(s): CHILD ABUSE | CHILD PROTECTION | FOSTER CARE | KINSHIP CARE | INSTITUTIONAL CARE | INSTITUTIONAL VIOLENCE | INTERNATIONAL COMPARISON | RESEARCH METHODS | SOCIAL SERVICES | NEW ZEALAND | AUSTRALIA | CANADA | ENGLAND | SCOTLAND | UNITED KINGDOM | UNITED STATESOnline resources: Click here to access online | International approaches... | Access the website
Contents:
Includes: International approaches for reporting on harm experienced by children in care: A high-level review
Summary: Based on extensive research conducted by Oranga Tamariki and published externally in November 2017, and subsequent advice from an Expert Measurement Group, we have identified a new measurement approach relating to the safety of tamariki in care. The new measures and the approach will not only help to inform practice improvements, and allow us to see patterns of harm and understand what is happening, but will also contribute to the reporting requirements under the Care Standards when they come into force on 1 July 2019. In addition, information from the new measures can be used to improve our international reporting under the United Nations conventions and treaties which New Zealand has ratified. Background Since 2010, we have been reporting on the harm experienced by tamariki in our care. The methodology used to measure harm has evolved over time as we have learnt more from New Zealand and other jurisdictions. This has led to the utilisation of different approaches and definitions which have made comparison difficult. For example, for the period 2014/2015, Child Youth and Family reported 40 tamariki in care were found to have been harmed by their ministry approved caregivers. Ministry approved caregivers are however only a subset of the total caregiver pool. The wider caregiver pool includes Child and Family Support Service approved caregivers and Parents in Return/Remain Home approved placements. In addition, the methodology used during this time did not include the measurement or reporting of harm experienced by tamariki placed within our Residences. During 2016/2017, in response to the issues outlined above, we undertook exploratory research of data and information held in our case management system, CYRAS, to better understand the extent and nature of harm experienced by tamariki in care. The research involved manually reviewing the case files of 698 tamariki in care during the 2015/2016 financial year in order to estimate the overall level of harm experienced in care. This research provided a more holistic view which allowed us to estimate the relative levels of harm by placement type, and by type of person who caused the harm, as well as harm that occurred within caregiver’s homes, within Residences (both Youth Justice and Care & Protection) and in the community. The study also identified a number of recording issues to be addressed. The resulting research report, Understanding harm experienced by children and young people in care during 2015/16 (#5698), was published on the Oranga Tamariki website on 28 November 2017. At that time, we committed to establish an expert group comprised of key advisors and academics to discuss the findings and implications of this research, and proposed a future measurement approach that provides a sustainable and repeatable measure of safety in care. (Executive summary). The report, International approaches for reporting on harm experienced by children in care: A high-level review, outlines the approach used for reporting harm in a number of English speaking countries that are comparable to New Zealand: England, Scotland, the United States, Canada, and Australia. The report is included in the main report or can be accessed via the link or from the website. Record #5974
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Includes: International approaches for reporting on harm experienced by children in care: A high-level review

Based on extensive research conducted by Oranga Tamariki and published externally in November 2017, and subsequent advice from an Expert Measurement Group, we have identified a new measurement approach relating to the safety of tamariki in care.

The new measures and the approach will not only help to inform practice improvements, and allow us to see patterns of harm and understand what is happening, but will also contribute to the reporting requirements under the Care Standards when they come into force on 1 July 2019. In addition, information from the new measures can be used to improve our international reporting under the United Nations conventions and treaties which New Zealand has ratified.


Background

Since 2010, we have been reporting on the harm experienced by tamariki in our care. The methodology used to measure harm has evolved over time as we have learnt more from New Zealand and other jurisdictions. This has led to the utilisation of different approaches and definitions which have made comparison difficult.

For example, for the period 2014/2015, Child Youth and Family reported 40 tamariki in care were found to have been harmed by their ministry approved caregivers. Ministry approved caregivers are however only a subset of the total caregiver pool. The wider caregiver pool includes Child and Family Support Service approved caregivers and Parents in Return/Remain Home approved placements. In addition, the methodology used during this time did not include the measurement or reporting of harm experienced by tamariki placed within our Residences.

During 2016/2017, in response to the issues outlined above, we undertook exploratory research of data and information held in our case management system, CYRAS, to better understand the extent and nature of harm experienced by tamariki in care. The research involved manually reviewing the case files of 698 tamariki in care during the 2015/2016 financial year in order to estimate the overall level of harm experienced in care.

This research provided a more holistic view which allowed us to estimate the relative levels of harm by placement type, and by type of person who caused the harm, as well as harm that occurred within caregiver’s homes, within Residences (both Youth Justice and Care & Protection) and in the community. The study also identified a number of recording issues to be addressed.

The resulting research report, Understanding harm experienced by children and young people in care during 2015/16 (#5698), was published on the Oranga Tamariki
website on 28 November 2017.

At that time, we committed to establish an expert group comprised of key advisors and academics to discuss the findings and implications of this research, and proposed a future measurement approach that provides a sustainable and repeatable measure of safety in care. (Executive summary).

The report, International approaches for reporting on harm experienced by children in care: A high-level review, outlines the approach used for reporting harm in a number of English speaking countries that are comparable to New Zealand: England, Scotland, the United States, Canada, and Australia. The report is included in the main report or can be accessed via the link or from the website. Record #5974