About the

White Kite Drawing

Child Protection Practitioners Association of Queensland (CPPAQ)

Since 2010, we have been working to improve professional collaboration and raise the profile of child protection law

CPPAQ is committed to a child protection sector that

  • Honours the Charter of Rights for children in care
  • Recognises that the decisions made during litigation fundamentally affect the basic human right of a child or young person to live with his or her family
  • Acknowledges that families have primary responsibility for the upbringing, protection and development of their children
  • Acknowledges that the State has responsibility for the protection of children and young people where it is not possible for families to do so, and that this responsibility should be ercised in the least intrusive way possible in the circumstances
  • Ensures that decisions and actions are guided by the best interests of the child or young person involved
  • Gives effect to the rights of children, young people, their families and their carers to be kept informed of and participate in decisions that affect them, and to have their views considered in decision making
  • Is open, fair, and respects the rights of the people who are affected by decisions
  • Acknowledges and respects the importance of family and cultural ties, and gives proper consideration to placing children and young people with kin
  • Respects the distinct roles of the different professionals involved, while promoting collaboration and a focus on the best interests of the child or young person
  • Works to minimise the impact of systems abuse on children, young people and their families

Flying a kite is a study in patience, skill, teamwork and battling the elements. It can also be an uplifting and joyful experience. We chose this symbol for the Association because it is instantly recognisable to children and young people.

For those of us working as professionals in child protection, it is a symbol of opportunity and a metaphor for good practice.

CPPAQ's Priorities

  • Enhance collaborative professional relationships and practice in the child protection and legal system through networking and information sharing.
  • Support multidisciplinary professional development relevant to child protection law, policy and practice.
  • Encourage the involvement of highly skilled and specialist practitioners in child protection work.
  • Promote awareness and use of high quality research across all disciplines in the child protection system.
  • Lobby for the establishment and adequate funding of legal mechanisms to enable all children, young people and their families to have access to justice.
  • Advocate for systemic improvement in child protection law, policy and practice.

The Association is strongly supportive of the decision to publish decisions of the Childrens Court of Queensland on the Supreme Court of Queensland Library's website: www.sclqld.org.au/qchc/


Debbie Jones

Debbie Jones has worked in the Queensland Public Service for over twenty years, undertaking a variety of roles including policy development, project management, service delivery, management and staff development/capacity building. Debbie has a strong social justice background, including roles in prosecutions, corrections, and police.  Throughout her career, she has focussed on the needs and issues of vulnerable people including victims of crime, children in the youth justice and child protection systems, and Indigenous people, particularly Indigenous homelessness and suicide. Debbie has been involved in developing and delivering QPS responses to the Queensland Child Protection Commission of Inquiry, the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse, and the Queensland Organised Crime Commission of Inquiry.  She has driven significant cultural change within the child harm investigation field, and has represented the QPS at national forums relating to child harm and technology facilitated child sexual abuse. Debbie is currently managing the implementation of recommendations from the Queensland Organised Crime Commission of Inquiry, with a particular focus on the 'blitz' on offenders sharing child exploitation material on peer to peer platforms. Debbie is committed to developing and delivering evidence-based policy in the field of policing responses to children and young people.  She has developed ties to the Griffith University School of Criminology and continues to support the supervision of students on professional placement within the QPS Child Safety & Sexual Crime Group.

Barb Power

Barb Power has over 25 years’ experience in child protection in both the statutory and non-statutory sectors. Barb’s roles have included Child Sexual Assault Counsellor, Senior Practitioner, Regional Manager in the former Queensland Commission for Children and Young People and Senior Manager Out of Home Care.  Barb’s present role is Child Safe Principal Practitioner leading Institutional Child Safeguarding for UnitingCare in Queensland across all services, including child and family wellbeing, disabilities services, hospitals and health, residential and community aged care, and Lifeline incorporating counselling and retail services. Barb’s passion is social justice and the philosophy of childhood as a human right

James Scott

Professor James Scott is the Head of the Mental Health Research Programme at the QIMR Berghofer Medical Research Institute and a practising Child and Adolescent Psychiatrist at the Metro North Mental Health Service. James is a National Health and Medical Research Council Clinical Practitioner Fellow has worked extensively in child and youth mental health community and inpatient services, is chair of the binational RANZCP Youth Special Interest Group and editor of the Journal Social Psychiatry and Psychiatric Epidemiology. He has co-authored over 180 peer publications, many in leading international journals and is an investigator and collaborator on local as well as global research projects. 

Melissa Wilson

Melissa Wilson is currently the Manager of Policy and Programs within the Courts Innovation Program in the Magistrates Court Service.  Melissa's substantive position is the Principal Lawyer of the Children and Young People team with the Office of the Public Guardian. Melissa has a strong interest in social justice and therapeutic jurisprudence.

Angelica Monardez

Angelica Monardez was admitted to the Supreme Court as a Legal Practitioner in 2007, and has over 12 years experience as a child protection practitioner.  Currently Ms Monardez is a Principal Lawyer with the Director of Child Protection Litigation (DCPL) within the Department of Justice and Attorney General.  Prior to her role with DCPL, Ms Monardez worked for Crown Law in the Mackenzie Parslow Chambers and practiced in the areas of Family Law/Child Protection, Hague Convention Matters and Dangerous Prisoners.  Ms Monardez commenced in the area of child protection as a Court Coordinator with Department of Child Safety (as it was known then) and following as a Court Services Advisor with the Court Services Unit of the Department.  Ms Monardez is member of the Legal Aid Separate Representative panel and has also worked with Legal Aid Queensland as a Separate Representative and parent representative in child protection matters.

Kate Grant

Kate holds a Master of Laws, Juris Doctor and Bachelor of Commerce. She is a Solicitor, Collaborative Lawyer, Family Dispute Resolution Practitioner and Nationally Accredited Mediator, with extensive experience in the areas of Child Protection, Domestic Violence and Family Law. Kate is a Legal Practitioner at the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Legal Service in Brisbane, specialising in Child Protection matters.  She is a currently the Deputy Chair of the QLS Children’s Law Committee and is a strong advocate for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander clients and their children who are overrepresented in the child protection system.

CPPAQ's Supporters

Founding Members:

• Bruce Doyle
• Murray Green
• Dr Scott Harden
• Gordon Harris
• Kendall Hawdon
• Robin Slade Jones
• Margie Kruger 
• Kathryn McMillan SC
• Catherine Moynihan
• Nigel Miller
• Lisa O'Neill
• Dr Jillian Spencer
• Dr Stephen Stathis

CPPAQ's Supporters

  • Grant Thornton provided us with the venue for our Practice Paper Series and catering for these events until mid 2019. Cooper Grace Ward Lawyers now provides the venue and catering.
  • Ryan Kruger Lawyers provides us with the venue for our Director's Meetings and Annual General Meeting. They have also provided us with administrative support for our events.
  • McCullough Robertson Lawyers provides us with legal advice.
  • Pilot Partners provides auditing services.
  • Penny Gordon & Associates provides facilitation services for our Annual Board Strategic Planning Day.
  • The Department of Child Safety, Youth and Women provided financial support in 2017 and 2019