Media Release by The Hon Dr David Gillespie MP

First meeting of Tripartite Forum to ensure greater child protection reforms

Joint Media Release with:

  • The Hon Dale Wakefield MLA, Minister for Territory Families

Federal Minister David Gillespie and Territory Minister Dale Wakefield today welcomed the congregation of the first Tripartite Forum to discuss both Governments’ response to the Royal Commission into the Protection and Detention of Children in the Northern Territory.

The Tripartite Forum is a newly-established advisory body that highlights the importance of working together to support implementation of the reforms resulting from the Royal Commission.

The first meeting will be an opportunity to establish strong foundations for the future work of the Tripartite  Forum, which will oversee the development of a 10-Year Generational Strategy, build on the Territory’s Early Childhood Plan and ensure strong Aboriginal engagement.

Participating in the Tripartite Forum are representatives from the Aboriginal-controlled sector, other non-government organisations, the Commonwealth government and the Territory government. Each brings with them relevant experience, skills, qualifications and other credentials to contribute to the Forum’s work.

Both Ministers expressed confidence the Forum would help address generational change for families and children in the Northern Territory.

“I look forward to working with the Northern Territory Government and the community sector to enact greater protections for children,” Dr Gillespie said.

“The Tripartite Forum will be key to reforms in child protection in the Northern Territory.”

Ms Wakefield said collaboration is the key to successfully implementing reform of the youth justice and child protection systems.

“The Northern Territory Government is investing significantly in reforms to create generational change and make a brighter future for all Territorians,” she said.

“However we can only succeed if we are all pulling in the same direction. This forum will give us the guidance and direction to achieve real change”.

Earlier this month, Ms Donna Ah Chee was announced as the Chairperson of the Tripartite Forum. She is a highly respected Aboriginal woman with 30 years’ experience in the Northern Territory as a CEO, Chairperson and Board member.

The Forum will meet quarterly and comprise representatives from:

  1. Northern Territory Government
  2. Commonwealth Government
  3. Aboriginal Peak Organisations NT (APO NT)
  4. Northern Territory Council of Social Service (NTCOSS)
  5. North Australia Aboriginal Justice Agency (NAAJA)