Review of a decision to place at a secure welfare service

Follow this procedure when a request to review a placement at SWS has been lodged.


A child or a parent may request a review of the decision to place a child in secure welfare services.


Case practitioner tasks

  • If a child or parent request a review of the decision, assist them to complete the 'Request for a review of a child protection decision' form where possible. The absence of this form does not affect the entitlement of a person to a review. The young person will remain at the secure welfare service while the review is completed or until the determined exit date, whichever is sooner.
  • Provide the request for review to the child protection operations manager upon receiving it.
  • Ensure the reviewing officer has the information they need to consider the request without delay.
  • Appoint an advocate to assist the young person with the review where necessary. A suitable advocate may be a legal representative, but can also be any person able to advocate specifically on behalf of the young person.

Director Child Protection or Assistant Director Child Protection tasks

  • Review the placement decision, taking into consideration all relevant information, including the file, the assessments of the child protection practitioner, other professionals and secure welfare staff, the purpose of the placement and the proposed exit plan.
  • Consider the young person’s presentation and any observed changes while at the secure welfare service. The process will include a meeting (or phone conversation) with the young person and where relevant, any other person, such as an advocate.
  • Prioritise the review, with an outcome to be determined without avoidable delay and always within two business days of lodgement.
  • Communicate the outcome to the young person by the next working day (or within 24 hours in relation to a placement of less than 72 hours duration). Provide advice about the right to seek a review of case planning decisions by the Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal (VCAT). Communicate the outcome to the care team within two business days. These communications can be delegated.
  • Document the outcome and rationale on CRIS.