Significant reforms to Australia’s adult safeguarding laws and practices are in the process of occurring in the context of increasingly market?oriented social care provision and rising human rights consciousness. Recent safeguarding developments have included federal regulatory reforms concerning disability and aged care service provision, together with significant reform activity stemming from a national inquiry into elder abuse. Despite this national activity, adult safeguarding continues largely to be an arena of state and territory responsibility. This article examines recent reform developments and asks how safeguarding laws and practices can be reformed to take account of increased federal involvement in social care regulation and the more market?oriented ways in which social care is being provided. The article argues that while state and territory safeguarding laws and practices are unlikely to become uniform, 10 principles ought to guide continued adult safeguarding reform. These principles seek to balance respect for the autonomy of individuals with society’s obligation to support those in need.
SOURCE: John Chesterman. “The future of adult safeguarding in Australia.” AJSI, 12 November 2019.
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