Risk Assessment

DCJ is reviewing the Risk Assessment (RA). The RA is used to estimate the likelihood that a child will be reported to the DCJ Child Protection Helpline in the next 18 months if the family is not supported with extra help or protective measures are not in place for a child.

Changes to make better decisions for children

The changes will:

  • make fairer decisions about the risk for children that reflect the unique needs, experiences, and risks in each family
  • balance risk concerns with family strengths and protective abilities that help to give a more holistic picture of a child’s life experiences
  • better aligns decision making with current NSW laws and the NSW Practice Framework
  • use identified strengths and protective abilities and apply them to the Family Strengths and Needs Assessment and case planning.


  • DCJ has used research and data to review Risk Assessment.
  • Stakeholder feedback has been extensively sought on how it could be improved. Learn more about the consultation process.
  • More consultation will take place in 2023 focused on making the tool fair for all families, particularly Aboriginal families.
Last updated:

28 Aug 2023

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We acknowledge Aboriginal people as the First Nations Peoples of NSW and pay our respects to Elders past, present, and future. 

Informed by lessons of the past, Department of Communities and Justice is improving how we work with Aboriginal people and communities. We listen and learn from the knowledge, strength and resilience of Stolen Generations Survivors, Aboriginal Elders and Aboriginal communities.

You can access our apology to the Stolen Generations.

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