NSW is leading the nation when it comes to providing permanency for children and young people through open adoption, according to the latest Australian Institute of Health and Welfare (AIHW) report released today.
Minister for Families, Communities and Disability Services Gareth Ward said the report reveals NSW was responsible for 99 per cent of adoptions by carers nationwide in 2019-20, thanks to the NSW Government’s focus on permanency for kids in care.
“Our nation-leading open adoption policy is changing the lives of children across our state, providing them with safe, loving and permanent homes,” Mr Ward said.
“We have seen the number of open adoptions grow exponentially in NSW because of the changes we’ve made to streamline the system.
“The figures highlighted in the report are testament to the work our Government has done, and continues to do, to prioritise permanency for children and young people.”
NSW recorded 169 adoptions by carers in 2019-20, up from 136 the previous year. The report also notes the landmark introduction of Integrated Birth Certificates last year, enabling adopted people in NSW to have both their birth and adopted families included on their birth certificate.
Minister Ward said the number of children and young people on guardianship orders also increased last year, up seven per cent to 3,267.
“Our first priority is always to help keep families together, by investing early in family preservation programs that are based on evidence,” Mr Ward said.
“But when it’s not safe for children to live with their birth parents, we’re committed to providing permanency through open adoption or guardianship, and these new figures are testament to the hard work being done to achieve that.”
The NSW Government’s open adoption work is in line with the Premier’s Priority to provide permanency for children and young people in out-of-home care.