Nichole Condon

Biography

Nichole has worked in the field for over 20 years, in roles including youth work in residential care, young parent residential support, domestic violence, community development, and has been in her current role in family support for seven years.
Having completed 3rd year of her BSW in 2003, Nichole returned to study and is a recent graduate of the Bachelor of Social Work with Honours from Griffith University. Nichole completed her Honours dissertation, a literature review, highlighting the issue of successive child removal.
Nichole is passionate about building confidence and understanding in parents and runs parent education courses in both her family support role at Village Community Services Inc. and privately, highlighting child, brain and emotional development, and attachment theory for parents for improved outcomes for children.

Abstract

A hidden population impacting the numbers of children entering child protective services are women, often young women, suffering multiple and complex issues. These women may encounter the child protection system and their child may be removed. Without adequate intensive intervention for the woman subsequent pregnancies may also result in removal. The result may be the eighth, ninth or tenth child entering the system as the support for change in the woman is not successful. Often, once a child is removed, the woman is no longer eligible for intensive family support that may bring about change. In Australia, the size of this group of women or children is not currently reported.
UK research by Karen Broadhurst highlighted the size and impact of this group. UK Judge Nicholas Crichton reports removing the 14th child from one woman, and notes the success of intensive case management programs in reducing further pregnancies, breaking the cycle of repeat removal. While such programs are seeing some success in the UK, Australia has few such programs, and no data reporting on this group.
Australian research is needed to determine the size of the group of women, and of the numbers of children impacted. There is a need of national data reporting on both the child and the mother. It will provide evidence for funding of early intervention, intensive, holistic case management to bring about change for these women and to reduce the number of children entering care.
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