Thursday 22 June 2023

Today, thanks to dedicated union members in regional Child Protection and Family Support offices across Western Australia, the Government has announced a $3.7 million attraction and retention package for front-line workers. 

After months of pressure applied by CPSU/CSA workplace delegates, Attraction and Retention Incentive (ARI) payments will be implemented as an immediate measure to address serious staff vacancies and high workloads in the Kimberley, Pilbara, Mid West-Gascoyne, Goldfields-Esperance and Wheatbelt.

Positions that will attract the incentives will include a range of front-line workers, such as Child Protection Workers, Aboriginal Practice Leaders and Residential Care Workers.

CPSU/CSA Branch Secretary, Rikki Hendon, said this was a significant win for WA’s Child Protection system and the vulnerable children and families our members work with every day.

“Today’s announcement of Attraction and Retention Incentives for a large proportion of WA’s regional Child Protection workforce is a significant win for our members and an important step in the right direction from Minister Winton and the Cook Labor Government.

“Our members have been crying out to the Government for help to address their excessive workloads and resourcing shortfalls, and the provision of ARIs will greatly assist regional Child Protection offices to attract and retain staff to carry out their important work with families and children in crisis.

“I want to thank our workplace union delegates, particularly our regional delegates, whose persistent pressure on the Government to address workforce shortages in their local communities has secured this critical outcome.

“More remains to be done to resolve workforce and resourcing issues in Child Protection. Stubborn staff vacancies and high workloads still feature in districts that will not receive the ARI, namely those in the Great Southern, South West and metropolitan areas regions of WA.

“The work to ensure we have a best practice Child Protection system that delivers for WA’s most vulnerable continues, and the introduction of this attraction and retention package will ensure that staff are supported to work and stay in key regions as we engage with the Government to find lasting solutions for the whole state.”


  • The CPSU/CSA negotiates the workplace rights and conditions for the Western Australian Department of Communities, which includes Child Protection and Family Support.
  • The CPSU/CSA covers 44,000 general public sector workers, including child protection officers, youth custodial officers, park rangers, Perth Zoo veterinary scientists and dental technicians.


For more information or to arrange further comment from Branch Secretary Rikki Hendon, please contact CPSU/CSA reception on 08 9323 3800 and ask for the Media and Stakeholder Engagement Officer.