FRC – Our Legislation

The Families Responsibilities Commission is governed by the Family Responsibilities Commission Act 2008. This document is available for download from this site.

The Family Responsibilities Commission Act 2008 (the Act) was passed in the Queensland Parliament with bipartisan support on 13 March 2008. The Commission commenced operating on 1 July 2008 and conferencing began on 12 August 2008, with the first sitting being held in Coen. As regulated by the Act at that time the Commission was to cease operations on 1 January 2012. Each subsequent year until 2014, following Australian and State Government consultations and budget allocations, the Commission was granted 12 month extensions.

On 5 August 2014 the Family Responsibilities Commission Amendment Bill 2014 was introduced into Parliament. The Bill proposed the following amendments aimed at increasing efficiencies and expanding operations:

  • to omit the Act’s sunset clause (section 152), which states that the Act expires on 1 January 2015
  • to amend the definition of welfare reform community area in the Act to replace specific references to communities (Aurukun, Hope Vale, Coen and Mossman Gorge) with “an area prescribed by regulation as a welfare reform community area”
  • to add new ‘justice triggers’ for notifications to the Commission if a community member is convicted in the District or Supreme Courts, or a child is convicted in a court
  • to amend the disqualification provisions for Local Commissioners and
  • to require the Family Responsibilities Board (FR Board) to meet every six months, rather than quarterly.

On 14 October 2014 the Bill was passed by the Queensland Parliament and the Act was proclaimed on 28 November 2014.

In introducing the Bill to Parliament, the former Premier Anna Bligh said: “This is a groundbreaking trial, unique in the world. It will be a significant departure from the policies that have been tried in the past. The bill establishes the Family Responsibilities Commission as the driving force in changing local social norms and behaviour. It will directly link improved care for children to welfare and other government payments.”

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