Media Releases - 22 August 2021

Child and Youth Wellbeing Strategy welcomed

The Commissioner of Children and Young People Leanne McLean today welcomed the launch of Tasmania’s first Child and Youth Wellbeing Strategy for 0 to 25-year olds: ‘It takes a Tasmanian village’.

“I am greatly encouraged by the scope of the strategy, which focuses on children and young people aged 0 to 25 years, and its recognition of the importance of the first 1000 days of a child’s life to their development and future wellbeing,” Ms McLean said.

“The aim of the strategy, which is to achieve improved and enduring wellbeing outcomes for Tasmania’s children and young people, is necessary and very welcome.”

Ms McLean said she was particularly pleased to see the Government has listened to feedback from children and young people.

“Children and young people are the real experts in their lives and what affects their wellbeing. Their views have been taken on board when developing the Vision and the 10 principles to guide decision-making about policies, programs and initiatives under the Strategy.

Ms McLean said children and young people identified a strong link between caring for the environment and their wellbeing. The Tasmanian environment is clearly acknowledged in the Strategy as a crucial component of children’s wellbeing and this will help to guide and prioritise future government policies and actions relating to the environment and climate change.

“I am particularly heartened by the focus on the first 1000 days of a child’s life, including commitments to implement a targeted sustained nurse home visiting program and a universal parenting program.

“The Strategy also includes providing greater support for vulnerable children and young people.

“It’s encouraging to see that programs such as Kids Care Clinics will be delivered through a state-wide community based paediatric service. This will fill a gap in health services throughout Tasmania.”

Ms McLean said she has a strong interest in the Strategy’s successful implementation.

“I hope it will make significant inroads into promoting and improving the wellbeing of all Tasmanian children and young people. If properly implemented and funded, the Strategy will provide a significant opportunity to make a real difference for generations of children and young people in Tasmania.

“Now, more than ever, it’s important that we all commit to improving and sustaining positive wellbeing outcomes for all Tasmanian children and young people and further addressing any gaps in services and supports to assist in the achievement of those outcomes.

“Strong accountability mechanisms will be needed to ensure the Strategy achieves its goals and responds to contemporary circumstances and challenges. The reporting processes outlined in the Strategy will be important to achieving this.”

Ms McLean said additional funding will be required to ensure the successful implementation of the Strategy.

“I look forward to seeing concrete commitments in both the upcoming and future budgets to ensure the Strategy can achieve its goals.

“I cannot stress enough that investing in the wellbeing of children and young people not only upholds their rights under the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child but also provides the foundation for the future prosperity for all Tasmanians, irrespective of age.”

The Child and Youth Wellbeing Strategy for 0 to 25 year olds is the culmination of a process begun back in 2020. In March 2020, the Government committed to delivering Tasmania’s first child and youth wellbeing strategy following recommendations made by the Commissioner in her wellbeing report for the development of a long-term whole-of-government strategy for improving the wellbeing of Tasmania’s children and young people.