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State of Denial: The Neglect and Abuse of Indigenous Children in the Northern Territory

General Material
Author(s)

"Non-government agencies working directly with Aboriginal children and families and Aboriginal communities continue to have profoundly negative experiences with the system. Making a child protection notification does not seem to provide people with any confidence that the child they are concerned about will be protected. In fact the commonly held view is that making a notification will simply make the child's situation worse. Non reporting of child abuse and neglect is higher in the Northern Territory than elsewhere with mandatory reporting requirements either ignored or not understood. In relation to child neglect the prevailing levels of poverty, homelessness and preventable disease amongst Aboriginal children are higher than for other states and territories. Despite this, or perhaps because of this, the Northern Territory child protection system is ignoring its legislative (and moral) responsibility to support and care for these children" (from the Summary). Recommendations to the Northern Territory Government are provided.