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Page URL: https://practice.orangatamariki.govt.nz/our-work/interventions/family-group-conferencing/care-and-protection-family-group-conference/social-worker-referral-for-a-care-and-protection-family-group-conference-section-181/
Printed: 22/10/2019
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Last updated: 01/07/2019

Social worker referral for a care and protection family group conference — section 18(1)

A social worker makes a referral for a care and protection family group conference once they form a belief that a tamaiti or rangatahi is in need of care or protection.

Social worker’s responsibilities

Supervisor’s responsibilities

The supervisor is responsible for checking that:

  • the social worker has listed all the grounds for their belief that te tamaiti or rangatahi is in need of care or protection in the referral and provided evidence for each ground in the Tuituia assessment and report
  • the Tuituia assessment and report have enough information so the coordinator can convene the family group conference.

The coordinator talks to the supervisor if they have any concerns about the referral.

Care and protection coordinator’s responsibilities

When the care and protection coordinator receives a referral, they meet with the social worker and/or supervisor to discuss it. If the coordinator doesn't think that the referral contains enough information for them to begin convening the conference, they may ask that more work be done. The coordinator must be specific about what extra information is needed, and the coordinator and the social worker should agree a timeframe to review the revised referral.

If the coordinator is still not satisfied with the quality of the referral, they must discuss it with the supervisor.

When the referral meets all the necessary requirements, the care and protection coordinator must convene a family group conference.

Preparing for the care and protection family group conference

Referrals from other professionals

The Police may refer to a care and protection coordinator for a conference under section 18(1) if they believe that te tamaiti or rangatahi is in need of care or protection.

Referral of care or protection cases to care and protection coordinator — section 18(1) of Oranga Tamariki Act 1989

Courts and organisations concerned with the wellbeing of tamariki (including government organisations) can refer to a care and protection coordinator with information about why they think te tamaiti is in need of care or protection. The coordinator looks at the information supplied in the referral and must decide whether a conference (or other appropriate action) is needed. If they are unsure, they can require a social worker to complete an investigation.

Referral of care or protection cases to care and protection coordinator by other persons or by court — section 19 of Oranga Tamariki Act 1989