Aboriginal children policy

Follow this policy when working with Aboriginal children.
Document ID number 1400, version 3, 1 July 2024.

The Victorian government acknowledges the historic and ongoing structural impacts on Aboriginal people, as described in the Statement of Recognition (s. 7A, Children, Youth and Families Act 2005 [CYFA]).  

In addition, under s. 7A of the CYFA, the Victorian Parliament acknowledges the Child Protection system played a key role in the enactment of policies leading to the dispossession, colonisation, and assimilation of Aboriginal people. The Victorian Parliament also acknowledges the laws, practices, and policies of former Child Protection systems resulted in the removal of Aboriginal children from their families, culture and Country, by compulsion, in an effort to assimilate and extinguish their culture and identity.


Intervention with an Aboriginal child is bound by the CYFA, including specific legislative requirements in the CYFA including:  

  • recognition principles (s.7E) 
  • best interest principles (s. 10) 
  • additional decision-making principles (s. 12) 
  • Aboriginal Child Placement Principle (s. 13)  
  • further principles for placement of Aboriginal child (s. 14) 
  • cultural support for Aboriginal child in out of home care (s. 176)
  • Decision-making principles (s.11) 
  • conciliation conference for an Aboriginal child (s. 222(2)(c)(d)) 
  • permanent care order in respect of an Aboriginal child (s. 323). 

Child Protection must consult with the ACSASS when making a significant decision about an Aboriginal child. Child Protection must also give regard and give effect to the recognition principles (s. 7E) in decision-making. 

This policy applies to Child Protection practitioners, the After Hours Child Protection Emergency Service (AHCPES) and the Streetwork Outreach Service (SOS). 

Consideration of the recognition principles (s.7E) must be recorded on CRIS for all key decisions and actions undertaken for Aboriginal children. The ‘Statement of Recognition’ case note category should be used for recording at all points of child protection involvement.