Tomorrow (June 1) is International Day for Protection of Children.

At the Digital Mandate conference in Canberra yesterday, David Fricker (Director General of the National Archives of Australia) and other speakers, eloquently put the case for Digital Transition. Digital Transition provides the opportunity to transform business processes, and will enable us to overcome the issues we currently experience with issues of access to records, incomplete and inaccurate records etc.

Nowhere is this more so than in the area of Child Protection, illustrated in these stories gathered over the last 12 months and published on our website Lest We Forget.

  • Lax recordkeeping can be deadly issue (US) May 15, 2013
  • Problems identified by child protection inspectors (IRE) May 10, 2013
  • Abusers may be at large, says church (AUS) April 23, 2013
  • Poor record-keeping holds back pursuits of justice (AUS) April 6, 2013
  • Poor records hide truth from state wards (AUS) April 5, 2013
  • AM calls for urgent talks on child protection in Port Talbot (WALES) November 19, 2012
  • Protection of vulnerable children ‘inadequate’ – Ofsted (UK) October 19, 2012
  • The Shaw Report – 5 years on (SCOT) September 7, 2012
  • No records of existence of about half of Africa’s children, UNICEF September 4, 2012
  • Child care report ‘deeply disturbing’ says Irish minister (Ireland) June 20, 2012

It is obvious that recordkeeping systems in child care need to be vastly improved to make record making and recordkeeping easier for overloaded case workers.

Current approaches to electronic recordkeeping are contributing to this problem. Too many of our systems are disruptive to the business at hand instead of facilitating a better business outcome. We should view Digital Transition as the opportunity to rethink the way in which we make, capture, classify and store records, not as a poor electronic imitation of a physical filing system.

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