Marlene Butteriss


Marlene works in Stakeholder Engagement within Child and Family Reform in QLD Department of Communities, Child Safety and Disability Services where she is responsible for to engaging with community members to increase understanding and confidence, and participation in planning and engagement processes used.


The practice of policy development is increasingly concerned with placing the citizen at the centre of policymakers’ considerations, not just as recipient but as agent. Genuine engagement in the co-production of policy and services requires major shifts in the culture, capability and operation of both government and non-government agencies.

Over the past decade, the Australian Government, through the 2020 Summit (2008) and the Declaration of Open Government (2010) has increasingly sought to increase transparency and improve agencies’ interactions with citizens. In November 2015 the Australian Government committed to finalising membership of the Open Government Partnership (OGP) and a major public consultation was launched to develop an Australian Government National Action Plan for open government. The aim is to ensure a citizen-first approach that actively engages citizens in the design and delivery of policies, reform programs and services and to leverage expertise and skills across the community.

This interactive session will use participatory processes to explore the ideas for empowering families, children and young people to have a voice in key policy reforms and solve problems collectively. In Queensland where we are undertaking a significant program of reform, policy decisions that support vulnerable families and young people to participate and contribute to policy decisions, reforms, service design and delivery are critical. To be well targeted and effective, policy decisions need to engage with and reflect an understanding of the day to day life of people who impacted, in the context of the communities in which they live.

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