Child Protection – when drug testing really matters

pre screening, screening testsCMM technology knows our most precious global commodity is our children. Future generations will dictate the course and wisdom and success of the national and global agenda, and it behooves us all to pay attention to the needs and requirements of the younger members of our immediate and extended community.  While most of us are able to adequately provide our families and our children with a fairly decent level of economic, social, emotional, educational and health support, a proportion of children in our society are unduly impacted by parental drug use. Many fall under the auspices of State child protection bodies and the accompanying regulatory requirements, and many of these families are required to undertake routine or random drug testing and screening as a condition for ongoing family cohesion and unity.[1]

In numerous instances drug and alcohol screening is required as a part of an ongoing monitoring and treatment plan, and is used as part of a clear risk assessment strategy that can underpins decision-making in relation to removal of children, supervised or unsupervised access or the prospect of successful trial or permanent reunification.[2]

In 2006 The National Drug and Alcohol Research Centre at the University of New South Wales, delivered its report on The Costs and Utility of Parental Drug-testing in Child Protection.[3] It made careful study of the available research and literature, and found that “appropriate use of drug-testing is feasible and that it can promote better outcomes in child-at-risk cases, as long as monitoring and compliance with testing and treatment entry are supported.”  It also maintained that alternatives to drug and alcohol testing that were less invasive (clinical assessment and standard self-report tools) were questionable in terms of reliability.  In its summary it went on to unequivocally state that current available research “suggests drug-testing is a viable means of monitoring drug use levels and referral to treatment.” [4]

In all states of Australia, the issue of drug and alcohol use in families and the need for stringent child protection strategies is a pressing one. CMM Technology believes our children are our future and supports the need for effective drug and alcohol testing measures in those cases where child protections monitoring and guidance is required. Call CMM Technology and speak to our expert consultants today. Telephone 618 9204 2500


[1] Victorian children Youth and Families Act 2005.

[2] Department of Human Services – Victoria Protecting Victoria’s Children – Child Protection Practice Manual.

[3] The Costs and Utility Of Parental Drug-Testing in Child Protection: A revies of the available literature and commentary. Burns, L., Wood E., Mattick, Richard P., Shakeshaft, A.  Technical Report Number 242 The National Drug and Alcohol Research Centre at the University of New South Wales, 2006.

[4] Ibid.  Conclusions, Pp. 30.

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