Child Protection Manual

The Child Protection Manual is the primary point of reference for child protection practitioners and managers employed by the Victorian Department of Health and Human Services regarding statutory child protection policy, procedures and supporting advice. It also contains protocols, practice resources and tools, and links to materials external to the manual that are relevant to child protection practice.

Content is subject to change at any time, so any material printed for immediate use should not be relied on for future reference without checking the on-line version to establish that it is still current.

Where the Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) is referred to on this site, please note:
On 30 November 2020, the Premier of Victoria announced a major Machinery of Government (MoG) change. From 1 February 2021, the Department of Health and Human Services became two departments: the Department of Health (DH); and the Department of Families, Fairness and Housing (DFFH). DFFH includes Child Protection. Content in the manual is gradually being updated to reflect this change.

The Framework for trauma-informed practice supports a shared understanding of what trauma-informed means to children, individuals and families, professionals and volunteers.



Child Protection has legislated responsibilities to screen, assess and manage family violence risk using the Multi-Agency Risk Assessment and Management (MARAM) framework. MARAM in child protection practice is now aligned with the SAFER children framework.


From 20 November 2021, SAFER is the risk assessment framework for Victorian child protection practitioners.

Policies, procedures and advice have been updated on the Child Protection manual to reflect the new way of working, and align with changes made to CRIS.


A new strategy to guide the attraction, retention, and development of the state’s child protection workforce has been launched by the Victorian Government.


There is a new client visit policy document. This document outlines the client visit policy and CRIS requirements.

The Client Visit Case Note on CRIS has been enhanced and is now required for use for every visit to a child.


A new Court report writing guide has been published to assist child protection practitioners in writing a court report using the new court report templates.


Welcome to our new look Child Protection Manual. You’ll find easier navigation; a practice dictionary to replace the glossary, and new features to enhance your experience using the site.

Be assured - all information from the previous manual has been maintained.


To assure the safety and health of child protection staff and their clients, changes have been implemented to how child protection practitioners do their work. Practitioners can find detailed information on these changes on the DHHS COVID-19 Hub site.


A new information sharing protocol has been has been developed between the Department of Health and Human Services (the department) and the Magistrates’ Court of Victoria and the Children’s Court of Victoria (the Courts). The protocol was established to respond to recommendation 28 of the Royal Commission into Family Violence.