'A community that values its children will cherish their parents': Family inclusion in child protection systems

'A community that values its children will cherish their parents': Family inclusion in child protection systems

Jessica Cocks

This webinar will discuss research on international family inclusion initiatives in child welfare and how they can be applied in Australia.

A family in a group therapy setting

Family inclusion is increasingly recognised as crucial to achieving child protection policy goals across Australian jurisdictions, including the urgent need to support permanency for children and young people safely at home and increase their numbers. We know from research and practice that many Australian families with an experience of the child protection system gravely distrust it, and continue to experience exclusion from child protection processes and their children’s lives.

This webinar will present findings from a Churchill Fellowship project completed in 2018 that explored best practice and research evidence on family inclusion initiatives in the USA, Canada, Norway and the UK. The webinar will challenge dichotomised thinking about parents and children in child protection, and argue for a reconceptualisation of family inclusion that recognises and addresses the social context of child removal. It will also discuss the evidence base for practical innovations in family-inclusive practice in three areas, including parent-to-parent peer work, a greater focus on carer and parent relationships, and parent leadership.

About the presenters

Jessica Cocks

Jessica Cocks is a social worker and researcher with over 25 years’ experience in child and family practice including out-of-home care. She is the national practice lead for children, young people and families at Life Without Barriers. Jessica is the founding President of Family Inclusion Strategies in the Hunter, a parent and worker co-led organisation based in New South Wales, which promotes family inclusion and parent-led change in the child protection system. In 2018, Jessica completed a Churchill Fellowship researching family inclusion in child welfare in the USA, Canada, Norway and the UK.

Attend event

Event date

24 October 2018 13:00 to 14:00 AEDT

Event cost


Event location


Register to attend

Need some help?

CFCA offers a free research and information helpdesk for child, family and community welfare practitioners, service providers, researchers and policy makers through the CFCA News.



Sign up to our email alert service for the latest news and updates