Overhaul of child protection offender report system quashed

A QUEENSLAND parliamentary committee has quashed a proposal to overhaul the state's child protection offender reporting system.

Palmer United Party MP Carl Judge, who introduced the private members bill into State Parliament last year, proposed a comprehensive review of the current approach to community management of reportable offenders.

One of the key changes outlined in the proposed bill included strengthening police powers to conduct random audits to ensure compliance with reporting obligations.

Mr Judge further suggested the responsibility for monitoring and administering offenders be transferred from the Queensland Police Service to the Department of Community Safety's Probation and Parole Service.

He said this approach would result in an increase in capacity for detectives to investigate any suspected cases of non-compliance.

The committee invited the Queensland Police Service and Premier Campbell Newman to make submissions surrounding the Child Protection (Offender Reporting) Amendment Bill, but both refused the invitation

The LNP-dominated Legal Affairs and Community Safety Committee concluded that legislation of this nature was a positive step in terms of increasing the safety of Queensland children, but alluded to it being addressed during an upcoming government review of the entire child protection offender reporting regime.

Legal Affairs and Community Safety Committee deputy chair Peter Wellington expressed concern at how the proposed bill was handled.

"I believe, for the committee to be able to make a complete report, the State Government and the police service should have made a submission," he said.

"Their decision not to be involved in the committee process or make any submissions, I believe, shows how the current committee system is not able to produce the best reports possible.

"The refusal of the police service to make a submission on the bill which has the potential to directly impact on Queensland Police Officers' duties, suggests to me that the leadership of the current police service has become politicised, is no longer at arms-length from the government and is now doing their bidding."



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