Media Releases - 22 November 2022

CCYP Annual Report 2021-2022

The 2021-2022 Commissioner for Children and Young People’s Annual Report was tabled today in the Tasmanian Parliament.

The Commissioner for Children and Young People, Leanne McLean, said her report detailed some important steps taken in the way we value and protect the wellbeing and safety of children and young people in Tasmania.

Citing as an example the release of the Tasmanian Government’s first ever Child and Youth Wellbeing Strategy, ‘It Takes a Village’, Ms McLean said children and young people were increasingly taking centre stage in government policy and decision making.

“There is still a lot more work to do to improve the situation for many Tasmanian children, including those in conflict with the law and those living in out-of-home care. However, the wellbeing strategy and the consultations with children and young people that contributed to its development are a crucial step forward in ensuring some of the basic rights of children and young people are met, including their right to have a say in matters that affect them.

“I recommended the development of this strategy in 2020 and pushed strongly for participation of young Tasmanians in its development. I am so pleased that the first iteration of the strategy was informed by the views of so many Tasmanian children and young people and those who support them in their communities.”

Other important developments that the Commissioner highlights in her annual report include:

• the establishment of an Advocate for Young People in Detention role, which significantly bolstered the Commissioner’s capacity to advocate for and behalf of children and young people who have been detained, including those at Ashley Youth Detention Centre
• Successful advocacy by the Commissioner in the youth justice sphere, including legislation to end the harmful practice of routinely strip searching children and young people in custodial settings
• the launch of the picture book, ‘OK so a nest is a home’, which gives the views of children and young people with experience of out-of-home care centre stage and shares their insights into the system and how to improve it
• following extensive advocacy by the Commissioner and others, the commitment by the Tasmanian Government to develop a comprehensive Child and Youth Safe Organisations Framework.

Ms McLean noted that these are only some of the changes achieved throughout the past 12 months.

“I also commented on draft legislation, made submissions and advocated on a range of issues that have the potential to affect the lives of Tasmania’s children and young people, informed by the views of children and young people. Much of this is detailed in the annual report.

“My Annual Plan for 2022-2023 sets out how I shall continue to promote the wellbeing, views and best interests of children and young people in Tasmania into the future.”

I hope you will take the time to read through my annual report for more details of the work I undertook