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UnitingCare Australia

UnitingCare Australia

UnitingCare Australia today expresses its disappointment in the Senate Committee’s recommendation to pass the Social Services Legislation Amendment (Drug Testing Trial) Bill 2019. This is despite the universal opposition of professionals with experience in the field of addiction treatment.

Main imageReport highlights urgent need to invest in our children

UnitingCare Australia has launched its research report, Review of Best Practice in Residential Out of Home Care. The review was prepared to provide information and guidance on best practice in the provision of residential out of home care for those children and young people who need it.

Drawing on consultations and a review of Australian and international research, the report identifies 12 best practice principles that should inform residential out of home care.

Key findings of the report include:

  • Strengthening the informal, community-based support system is key to both preventing child maltreatment and supporting a more effective statutory child protection system.
  • Preventing children’s exposure to risk factors is essential to reduce rates of child removal and promote children’s wellbeing and longer-term outcomes.
  • Governments and service systems at all levels must be working to uphold the rights of children and their families.
  • The most vulnerable children are often those in residential care.
  • Services should adopt the 12 principles of best practice.
  • Advocate for an environment that fosters healing and positive development.

There are more than 47,000 children in out of home care across Australia and each year the numbers continue to grow. Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children have unacceptably high representation in residential out of home care. 

You can download the report below.



Read the report for yourself:

Download the full report:

 Front cover


Download the appendices:


Download the summary flyer:


Download the two-page flyer:

 Two pager


Read the media release:

Download the media release:

Media release



The Main Findings of the Review


Finding 1

Strengthening the informal, community-based family support/child protection system is the key to preventing child maltreatment and working in synergy with that system is essential for the statutory child protection to be effective.



Finding 2

Preventing where possible and otherwise addressing the effects of exposure to the risk factors associated with child maltreatment is essential for reducing rates of maltreatment and removal. It is also critical for reducing developmental vulnerability, promoting physical and mental health, educational achievement and pro-social behaviour.




Finding 3

Governments at all levels need to play their part in enabling the enjoyment of recognised human rights. The rights of children and their families are interdependent – children cannot flourish if their families are denied a livelihood and shelter.


Finding 4

Arguably, our nation’s most vulnerable children and young people find themselves in residential care settings.



Finding 5

State and Territory funders of residential care need to ensure that services are commissioned and resourced in a way that care providers are able to fulfil the Best Practice Principles for Therapeutic Residential Out of Home Care.



Finding 6

Organisations concerned with child welfare and child protection should advocate policy and practice that ensures that all children and young people in OOHC services, and particularly those in residential care, receive the support and engagement necessary to foster agency, healing and positive development.



UnitingCare Australia today warned the possibility of a ‘perfect storm’ emerging in aged care, as older Australians face the prospect of being unable to access the supports they need. This is due to a deepening crisis of providers lacking the financial resources to meet the demands of quality service provision.

Monday, 01 July 2019 10:29




Browse UnitingCare Australia's resources below.


UnitingCare Australia's Strategic Priorities 2017-2020:


170703 Strat Plan Summary 1 Pager



UnitingCare Australia flyer:


UnitingCare Flyer 2018 A4 Page 2


UnitingCare Australia and Aged & Community Services Australia (ACSA) have welcomed a $2 million boost in funding to support the implementation of regional and remote elements of the Aged Care Workforce Strategy, including the Remote Accord.

This is the time to hear the lived experience of those with a disability and to explore the changes that are needed to promote best practice and transform society.

Budget 2019: UnitingCare Australia believes that a real surplus is what’s left after budgeting for the essentials.

UnitingCare Australia – 2019-20 Pre-Budget Submission

UnitingCare Australia is pleased to provide this submission to inform development of the 2019-20 Federal Budget.

Australia has experienced 27 years of continuous economic growth. However, the benefits of growth have flowed disproportionately to higher income earners and to the wealthy.  Wages below the median have stagnated. Underemployment and insecure, low quality jobs are on the increase. Unacceptable rates of poverty and child social exclusion persist. Housing affordability is at an all-time low and home ownership, the jewel in the crown of Australia’s social policy egalitarian accomplishments, is falling.

Ambitious social reforms have been under resourced: Closing the Gap targets have not been achieved, and a mechanism to provide badly needed Indigenous advice to Parliament has been summarily dismissed. The National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS), which gave so much hope for people living with a disability, has assisted many but disappointed others. Subsidies for early childhood care, education and aged care have attracted a growing number of for-profit providers, but marketisation has failed to improve the supply of accessible, high quality services for the most disadvantaged. Inequality and the inequities in health and education outcomes that arise from it has increased, as a result of policies that reduce tax and transfer progressivity and therefore government revenue.

Australia became a signatory to the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in 2015 but has yet to express this commitment in a whole of government approach to inclusive, sustainable growth. UnitingCare Australia urges the Government to adopt a policy framework and Budget initiatives that would promote inclusive, sustainable growth and enable Australia to achieve its SDG targets by 2030.  

UnitingCare Australia welcomes today’s announcement of an injection of $662 million into residential, home and community aged care.

Today marks the official start of the Royal Commission into Aged Care Quality and Safety. UnitingCare Australia welcomes the focus on creating a system of aged care for older Australians that provides quality, compassionate care and a safe environment.