Territory Stories

The Northern Territory news Tue 27 Mar 2018



The Northern Territory news Tue 27 Mar 2018

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NT news


The Northern Territory news; NewspaperNT




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Community newspapers -- Northern Territory -- Darwin; Australian newspapers -- Northern Territory -- Darwin

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News Corp Australia

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Copyright. Made available by the publisher under licence.

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News Corp Australia



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08 NEWS TUESDAY MARCH 27 2018 NTNE01Z01MA - V2 A FOUR-YEAR-OLD boy from the community of Ali Curung, 170km southeast of Tennant Creek, has been taken to Alice Springs for medical care after he was allegedly sexually assaulted on Sunday evening. It is understood a 17-yearold is being held after the incident allegedly occurred behind the communitys Baptist Church. Northern Territory police told News Corp Australia in a statement: Police from the Northern Territory Child Abuse Taskforce are investigating the alleged sexual assault of a child in a remote Northern Territory community. A youth is currently in custody and is assisting police with their inquiries. No one else is being sought in relation to this matter at this time. It follows the mid-February case of a two-year-old girl who was allegedly raped in Tennant Creek by a 24-year-old relative, who has been charged with unlawful sexual intercourse. In that case, the child was flown to Adelaide for medical care. The latest incident comes 10 days after Territory Families Minister Dale Wakefield released the findings of an internal review into the alleged rape of the two-year-old girl. The review found child protection staff lack sufficient expertise in the links between family violence and child protection. And investigations assessing more than one notification have a high potential to lose critical information. Chief Minister Michael Gunner said in a statement: Im aware of an alleged sexual assault of a child in Ali Curung. This is an extremely disturbing incident. Every child, no matter where they live, deserves to be in a safe environment. He said the matter would be referred to the Childrens Commissioner and that additional staff from Territory Families had been deployed to the community. The head of Territory Families, Ken Davies, said his department was trying to find out what happened to the boy. I cant say anything really except weve got a team on the ground working with police, Mr Davies said. We have a Territory Families officer there and were there with police. We know the families fairly well. Well certainly be working closely with police. Opposition Leader Gary Higgins said the alleged incident reinforced the need to address the child protection crisis facing parts of the Northern Territory. The Territorys children are some of the nations most vulnerable people, it is paramount that the safety of Territory children is at the core of all decision-making, irrespective of cultural beliefs, he said. The safety of every single child in the Northern Territory should be the first consideration of any government. I call on the Territory Government to implement what ever is necessary to ensure that horrendous incidents such as this never happen again. Mr Higgins said an intergenerational and long-term approach was necessary. He said short-term measures were needed immediately to prevent more incidents occurring. Addressing the disadvantage in the Northern Territory requires both long and short-term measures, including alcohol reform, Aboriginal people taking responsibility for their childrens health and wellbeing and a co-ordinated approach by federal and Northern Territory governments and Aboriginal community-controlled organisations to address poverty, housing, health, education and access to services. This is a complex set of problems that cannot be solved overnight, but what sort of society do we live in if we cannot commit to addressing this crisis with a sense of urgency. Every child, no matter where they live, deserves to be in a safe environment C H I E F M I N I S T E R M I C H A E L G U N N E R HOW WEVE COVERED THE ISSUE V1 - NTNE01Z01MA Wednesday, February 21, 2018 ntnews.com.au Incl GST$1.60 Country freight 30 cents extraJESSICA PERIS TESTS POSITIVE STORY >> P4 CRUISE BOOM KICKS OFF TODAY >> NT BUSINESS REVIEW CHARLES TO DO THE NT WITHOUT CAMILLA REPORT >> P3 NATIONAL CRISIS An innocent two-year-old girl has allegedly been raped by a 24-year-old man in a Territory town.A man has died from an alleged assault in thesame place a week earlier.Aboriginal leaders have urgently metto put a stop to this madness.Now its time for all our politicians to end thesideshows and deal with a real ... An aerial view of Tennant Creek in outback Northern Territory STORY P5 EDITORIAL P32 V1 - NTNE01Z01MA ALEX JULIUS 35TH ANNIVERSARY FEATURE STARTS >> P32 NEWS, ANALYSIS >> P4-9 ED ITORIAL >> P10 MalcolM Turnbull Prime Minister YOU CAN FIX THIS A little girls heartache must lead to generational changeKe n Davies Territory Families chief executive nigel scullion indigenous affairs Minister Dale WaKeFielD Territory Families Minister Michael gunner chief Minister reece KershaW Police commissioner Thursday, February 22, 2018 ntnews.com.au Incl GST$1.60 Country fre ight 30 cents extra FAREWELL TO DSOS CHIEF CONDUCTOR >> ENTERTAINMENT CRUISERS BRING DARWIN TO LIFE REPORT >> P3 V1 - NTNE01Z01MA WAKE UP, DALE Raped toddler left in dangerous home after 16 police notifications Territory Families Minister Dale Wakefield Friday, February 23, 2018 ntnews.com.au Incl GST$1.60 Country freight 30 cents extra NT NEWS EDITORIAL There must be serious consequences for those who failed this innocent two-year-old girl, who will now endure a lifetime of anguish and pain.The standard you walk past is the standard you accept. The Territory simply can not accept what has happened FULL COVERAGE >> P6-9 EDITORIAL >> P38 Minister still to visit devastated town Mayor: Where is she? Opposition: Get off your bum and do something W W W . D T I X . C O M . A U SATURDAY 14 JULY 2018D A R W I N B O T A N I C G A R D E N S A M P H I T H E A T R E F R O M 2 P M F O R T I C K E T S A N D M O R E I N F O R M A T I O N G O T O JOHN FARNHAM DARYL BRAITHWAITE TAXIRIDE THE BLACK SORROWS TICKETS ON SALE NOW WWW.DTIX.COM.AU V1 - NTNE01Z01MA TERRITORY SIBLINGS OLYMPIC DREAM STORY >> P13 GAS JOBS ON THE HORIZON REPORT >> P3 NASAS ARNHEM LAND AMBITIONS REPORT >> P15 RACE FOR PALMO HEATS UP STORY >> P11 SATURDAY February 24, 2018 ntnews.com.au Incl GST$2.20 Country freight 50 cents extra A young child plays near the BP service station in Tennant C reek after 10pm on Thursday nig ht. There is no suggestion this child is under the watch or care o f Territory Families Picture: MICHAEL FRANCHI EXCLUSI VE TAKE THEM AWAY SCULLION: BAN THE BOOZE CUNNINGHAM: KIDS NEED RESCUING GUNNER: ILL SACK NO-ONE WOOLF: EVERY CHILD MATTERS REpORTS >> p6-9 EDITORIAL >> p38 Head of the Stolen Generation s ays its time to remove more at-risk children fr om their homes Dont Drink and Drive Watch the campaign videos ntmacc.com.au/enou gh SATURDAY MARCH 17 2018 NEWS 11 V1 - NTNE01Z01MA A DAMNING internal reviewof the actions of TerritoryFamilies leading up to the al-leged rape of a two-year-oldgirl in Tennant Creek has re-vealed a litany of failures bythe department. But it maintained no indi-vidual was at fault for the inci-dent described as tragic, yetunanticipated. There is no evidence tosuggest that if one or all pro-viders had supported the fam-ily differently, this would haveprevented the alleged rape,the review read. A heavily redacted versionof the internal review releasedto media yesterday morningpainted a picture of a deeplydysfunctional system in whichservice intervention oftenlacks a clear objective or pur-pose. The review found child pro-tection staff lack sufficient ex-pertise in the links betweenfamily violence and child pro-tection. And investigations assess-ing more than one notificationhave a high potential to losecritical information. It said there was unanimousagreement among service pro-viders that the family hadmade marked improvementstowards the end of last yearand the little girl was not inneed of care and protection. Territory Families MinisterDale Wakefield said she wouldnot accept or reject the find-ings, but would defer a decisionuntil another investigation byChildrens Commissioner Col-leen Gwynne was complete.That review is expected to becomplete at the end of themonth. Ms Wakefield said if more comprehensive informationwas available to the childs caseworkers, it is likely they wouldhave made different deci-sions, which may have pre-vented the alleged rape. The reviews key rec-ommendation was the devel-opment of a new clientinformation system whichwould provide workers betteraccess to a full family history toallow those workers to makecomprehensive assessmentsof child safety and risk. Territory Families uses aHealth Department program which is being decommis-sioned. Ms Wakefield said thecurrent system made it difficultfor child protection workers tosee whole of family interven-tions. Clearly, that impacts onthe quality of the decisionmaking of our child protectionworkers, she said. The report points to abreakdown in communicationbetween police and govern-ment agencies. Ms Wakefieldsaid that had been raised withPolice Commissioner ReeceKershaw. NT Police is the most pro-lific notifying agency for childprotection concerns. That came as no surprise toMs Gwynne, who is a formerpolice officer. Too often in the NT welook to pass a problem ratherthan deal with it, she said. I think the mentality wevegot into it is reporting ratherthan responding. Perhaps thiscase may be able to highlightsome of those issues. Ms Gwynne said she failedto understand how such poorco-ordination between agen cies could occur in a smalltown such as Tennant Creek. Information sharing prob-lems had been embedded inthe NT during her entire ca-reer here, she said. We have a big expanse ofspace here, but in terms of peo-ple, we are very small in com-parison to other jurisdictions,she said. But we just dont seem tobe able to get over this hurdleof working together to protectour most vulnerable and weabsolutely have got to find asolution. KEY FINDINGS n Territory Families does not have a practice framework, meaning service intervention often lacks a clear objective or purpose n Service providers did not stay involved long enough to ensure risks to the two-yearold were properly addressed n Child protection staff may be desensitised to the constant flow of notifications of children who have suffered harm n There is no position to assess the quality of decision-making of child protection workers and ensure consistency n Staff do not have expertise in the links between family violence and child protection n Most relevant agencies do not attend interagency meetings n Child protection investigations which assess more than one notification have a high potential to lose critical information n Territory Families is receiving notifications which do not meet reporting requirements set out by law n Agency responses are targeted at individuals, and do not respond to risks for whole families, leading to fragmentation of knowledge and interventions n Some notifications are being screened out based on the here and now status, rather than cumulative harm Monumental failures HAYLEY SORENSEN Minister for Territory Families Dale Wakefield faces the media yesterday Picture: JUSTIN KENNEDY SAVE OUR CHILDREN F www.nt.gov.au Territory Families is calling for Territorians, particularly Aboriginal community members, to express their interest in being a member of the Youth Justice Advisory Committee (YJAC) 2018. The Committee is a statutory advisory body, which provides advice to the Minister for Territory Families about issues relevant to the administration of the Youth Justice Act. This can include planning, development, integration and the implementation of government policies and programs relevant to young people. Up to four community members will be selected, based on their skills, knowledge and experience of the youth justice system. Aboriginal applicants and applicants aged 18 25 years are strongly encouraged to apply. To receive an information pack and application form, please contact: (08) 89357563 or email: TF.YJACSecretariat@nt.gov.au. Expressions of Interest should be received by 30 March 2018. 01 04 JM Searching for a new home? Dont miss Realestate in Saturdays NT News. PAUL TOOHEY SAVE OUR CHILDREN Boy, 4, allegedly raped Teen held after alleged sexual assault of youngster at Ali Curung A four-year-old boy was allegedly raped at the community of Ali Carung, 170km southeast of Tennant Creek