Election Claims for Improvement 2018

Priorities for the Foster Care Association of Victoria are directly informed by foster carer’s experiences in providing care to the children in their homes. As the peak body representing foster carers in Victoria, the FCAV continues to champion change through government working groups and independent review processes which aim to target areas for improvement. While foster care in this state is still under-resourced and lacking in certainty for foster carers and the children in their care, progress is evident in some critical areas, as we see attention and funding being paid to the calls for improvement foster carers have been making through the FCAV for many years (see FCAV Media Releases).

 

See our Claims for Improvement 2018 and Future Foster Care? Campaign

 

Read below for drivers of our top three claims

1. Increase the carer allowance

2. Increase and improve access to expense reimbursements

3. Extend care beyond 18 - Pending details of full rollout

 

Advocacy in detail 

Marilyn McHugh: Supporting Foster and Kinship Carers: Levels of Remuneration for Carers

 

Australia has 9,900 foster carer households and 13,700 relative/kinship households caring for 43,400 children in out-of-home care. Given the higher number of children in care, compared to carers, it is not surprising that over half (52%) of all foster care households have multiple placements (2-4 foster children) compared to 39% of relative/kinship households. A range of financial and non-financial supports are required to support and sustain placements, prevent carer burnout and the breakdown of placements. An important component of financial support is carer remuneration (i.e. care allowance/subsidy). Ongoing difficulties in carer recruitment/retention, and the increasing costs of children, suggests it is appropriate to consider the current levels of carer allowances provided by the eight jurisdictions and discuss how levels compare to current Foster Care Estimates (FCEs). The FCEs, based on the costs of children not in care, are adjusted to reflect estimates of the day-to-day costs of caring for children in different age groups. The ongoing absence of a national framework setting levels of subsidies fails to ensure adequacy and equity for all carers. This paper looks at the state of play and how, in relation to remuneration, carers in the various States are faring in relation to the FCEs.

 

To see Marilyn McHugh's presentation slides from the Shine A Light Conference click here