Communities and Justice


Here is a table of terms, keywords and or abbreviations used throughout the Permanency Case Management Policy Rules and Practice Guidance. 

Term  Definition
Aboriginal family-led decision making (AFLDM)

Aboriginal family-led decision making empowers Aboriginal families to have meaningful participation in decision-making about the safety and wellbeing of Aboriginal children and young people. It is a set of processes that allows Aboriginal families to have meaningful participation in case planning and other decision-making processes, leading to better outcomes for Aboriginal children and young people. 

Caseworkers respect that families are the experts in their own lives and work as partners with the whole family to enable meaningful participation. Aboriginal family-led decision making occur across the support service continuum and is not a one-off process.

See Aboriginal family-led decision making factsheet (PDF, 554.5 KB)

Care Act, the

NSW Children and Young Persons (Care and Protection) Act 1998.

All sections referred to in this document refer to the Care Act unless otherwise specified.


A carer engaged by a designated agency, authorised under section 137 of the Care Act. 

Unless otherwise specified, ‘carer’ refers to:

• an authorised carer (foster carer, relative/kin carer or respite carer) of a child in out of home care (OOHC) and 

• employees providing OOHC to a child in residential settings, including ITC.

Case responsibility

Refers to primary case responsibility of a PSP provider for:

• providing residential care and control of a child in OOHC 

• supervision of the child’s placement

• supporting carers to exercise care responsibility for the child 

• making decisions about the child, including decisions about managing behaviour

• achieving the child’s case plan goal of restoration, guardianship or adoption within two years; or providing long-term care.

Or refers to primary case responsibility of a PSP provider for achieving a child’s case plan goal of preservation within two years (not in OOHC).

Or refers to primary case responsibility of a PSP provider or other service for supervising SIL/TSIL placements for young adults (previously in OOHC).

Also see secondary case responsibility, SIL, TSIL.

Caseworker or 

Casework practitioner

See Practitioner

Unless otherwise specified, a child or young person under the age of 18 years:

• in OOHC or

• not in OOHC with a case plan goal of preservation.

CFDU DCJ Child and Family District Unit
CSC DCJ Community Services Centre
DCJ The NSW Department of Communities and Justice
DCJ principal officer

This is the principal officer of a local district with responsibility for:

• supervising that district’s arrangements for providing OOHC

• responding to critical event reports by PSP providers operating in that district (the principal officer’s district).

Also see PSP providers and OOHC providers.

Department, the The NSW Department of Communities and Justice
Designated agency An agency accredited by the NSW Office of Children's Guardian to provide OOHC services in NSW.
District See local district.
FAPFC Family Action Plan for Change, also known as the Family Action Plan, is a parent-led plan that identifies the changes needed for children to be safe. It includes goals, actions, responsibilities, timeframes and how children will experience the change. 
ICM Interim Care Model
ITC Intensive Therapeutic Care
ITTC Intensive Therapeutic Transitional Care
ITCH Intensive Therapeutic Care Home
Local district

A DCJ district that is a designated agency. Refer to NSW Department of Communities and Justice’ districts.

Also see Designated agency, PSP provider.

Minister Minister for DCJ
Nominated unit

A DCJ unit exercising secondary case responsibility for a child in case responsibility of a PSP provider.

In many local districts the nominated unit will be the Child and Family District Unit (CFDU). However, depending on the local district’s operating arrangements, it may be a Community Services Centre (CSC), an OOHC Hub or other specialist team.

Also see case responsibility and secondary case responsibility.

OOHC Unless otherwise specified, statutory out-of-home care. 
OOHC provider

A designated agency accredited to provide OOHC in NSW. 

Also see designated agency and PSP provider.

Other service 

An agency contracted to provide any other service (excluding OOHC) on a fee-for-service basis.

Also see PSP provider and OOHC provider.

Parent Parent refers to a child’s birth parent, or a person allocated parental responsibility or guardianship as the result of a court order.
PCMP Permanency Case Management Policy

An OOHC placement (‘placement’) is a place, other than the usual home of a child, when care is provided to a child by a person other than their parents (section 135(1)).

A placement may be a relative/kin care or foster care placement; or ITC placement or another type of placement in OOHC. 


A practitioner provides casework to a child (in or not in OOHC), their carer (if applicable), parents and family/kin. 

Unless otherwise specified, a practitioner can include a caseworker, case manager, casework manager, team leader, casework specialist. 

Preservation service provider

A PSP provider contracted to provide the PSP family preservation program.

Also see PSP provider.

Primary case responsibility See case responsibility.

Permanency Support Program (PSP). 

The PSP provides services to vulnerable children so they can grow up in stable, secure and loving homes.

PSP provider

A PSP provider contracted by the Department to:

• arrange and supervise OOHC placements and/or

• exercise case responsibility for achieving children’s case plan goals of preservation, restoration, guardianship, open adoption and long term care.

Also see case responsibility.

Regulations, the NSW Children and Young Persons (Care and Protection) Regulation 2022
Secondary case responsibility

Secondary case responsibility, as distinct from primary case responsibility, is responsibility for carrying out the Department’s statutory role, including:

• safety and risk assessment (SARA) & risk re-assessment 

• alternate assessment, to ensure a child’s safety in care

• exercising the residential aspect of parental responsibility on behalf of the Minister. 

On ChildStory, secondary case responsibility (exercised by a nominated unit) is referred to as ‘internal primary case responsibility’.

Service provider See PSP provider.
SIL Supported Independent Living. See SIL fact sheet (PDF, 406.1 KB).
SIL/TSIL placement

Supported Independent Living (SIL) or Therapeutic Supported Independent Living (TSIL) are placements supervised by a PSP provider, in which a young person (in OOHC) or young adult (previously in OOHC), resides. 

Also see SIL.

Young adult A young adult 18 years of age or over, previously in OOHC.
Last updated:

17 Feb 2023