The Child Death Review Board (CDRB) conducts systemic reviews following the death of a child connected to the child protection system under Part 3A of the Family and Child Commission Act 2014.
These reviews identify opportunities to improve the child protection system and prevent future deaths. The CDRB uses agency information, research and data to make system-wide findings and recommendations for systemic improvements to help prevent deaths that may have been avoidable.
Main functions and powers
The CDRB has several functions and powers set out in Part 3A of the Family and Child Commission Act 2014. These include:
- undertaking systemic reviews relating to the child protection system following relevant child deaths
- analysing data and applying research to identify patterns, trends and risk factors
- making recommendations about legislative change and improvements to systems, policies and practices
- identifying preventative mechanisms to help protect children and prevent deaths that may be avoidable
- monitoring the implementation of recommendations made by the CDRB
- reporting annually on its functions, by way of an annual report to be submitted by 31 October to the responsible Minister
- preparing other reports at any time that may be provided to the Minister (with a recommendation about whether to table in the Legislative Assembly). Unless the Minister has tabled the report in Parliament, it cannot be published if it includes:
- personal information about an individual (see the Information Privacy Act 2009), or
- information that may prejudice an investigation of a possible contravention of the law, or
- a recommendation made by the CDRB.
The CDRB does not:
- investigate the deaths of individual children
- make findings about the actions of individuals or assign disciplinary against any person.
The Board is hosted by the Queensland Family and Child Commission (QFCC) for administrative purposes, but its operational functions are not influenced by this. The CDRB is not subject to direction by the responsible Minister or anyone else about how it performs its functions. The Board is established to act independently and in the public interest at all times.
Policies and procedures
The CDRB is established under the Family and Child Commission Act 2014 as amended by the Child Death Review Legislation Amendment Act 2020.
The Procedural Guidelines support the CDRB by outlining procedural aspects of its role.