Safe, Protected … Connected? The Best Interests of Aboriginal Children and Permanency Planning in the NSW Care and Protection System

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‘The best interests of the child’, permanency and related core legal and social notions are crucial to decision-making in the care jurisdiction. Despite their over-representation in NSW care matters, there is a lack of evidence about the meaning of these constructs in relation to Aboriginal children, especially from First Peoples’ perspectives. This Greater Western Sydney-based qualitative research shares Aboriginal community members’ views on these concepts. To participants, ensuring Aboriginal children’s best interests, sense of permanence and attachment meant growing them up safe, nurturing ongoing collective ties to extended Aboriginal family and keeping alive children’s meaningful connections to community and culture.
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