WATCH

ABOUT THE FILM

“Child protection is everybody’s business”. It’s the slogan we hear with familiar regularity in community service announcements. Yet the only time the public hears about the system that protects our most vulnerable children is when something goes terribly wrong.

THE DEPARTMENT is a feature documentary which takes us inside the never-before-seen child protection system at work in NSW. Filmed in an observational style, it follows caseworkers across the state as they navigate the complexities of keeping children safe in families experiencing domestic violence, addiction, poverty, mental health issues and intergenerational trauma.

Told through the eyes of the caseworkers, complemented by the authentic voices of the families themselves, each story allows us to explore a different facet of child protection, revealing the complexity, bravery and raw emotion experienced in the lives of these people every day.

TRAILER

THE FILMMAKERS

A special thank you to:

KATIE, LEANNE, STACEY, DEB, KEIRON, RUSSELL, TYRAH
and their families

VALERIE, MEGAN, BRITTNEY, RUTH and HELEN

and to the featured DCJ staff
EVA, SHAE, KATH, YVONNE, REZA, ANASTASIA, DANI, MELANIE, KATE J, PAM, ELISE and KATE A

Directed & Filmed by
SASCHA ETTINGER EPSTEIN

Produced by
MARY MACRAE

Produced by
IAN DARLING

Produced by
KATE HODGES, MAJHID HEATH and HAYLEY B. JOHNSON

Editors
MATHEW EVANS and SALLY FRYER

Composer
HELENA CZAJKA

Sound Design
WES CHEW

Sound Recordists
RICHARD BOXHALL, PHILIP MYERS and SASCHA ETTINGER EPSTEIN

Edit Assistant
MEGAN FINLAY

Edit Assistant Placement supported by SBS Diversity Talent Escalator Program

Production Office Manager
ALISHA MANNING

SBS Head of Documentaries
JOSEPH MAXWELL

Commissioning Editor
SUSIE JONES

Post Facility BLUE POST

Colourist
JAMIE HEDIGER

Sound by Unison Sound
WES CHEW and LUKE MYNOTT

Titles Animation
PAUL DUCCO

Title Design
RACHEL DIGHT

Website Design
RHYS MORRIS

Education and Outreach funding
THE CALEDONIA FOUNDATION

With heartfelt thanks to all the DCJ staff we filmed with at:
SHELLHARBOUR CSC, EASTERN & CENTRAL SYDNEY CSC, MT DRUITT, ST GEORGE, WESTERN NSW DISTRICT CSCs, the HELPLINE and AFTER HOURS RESPONSE TEAM

and the many offices we visited

A special thank you to:

KATIE, LEANNE, STACEY, DEB, KEIRON, RUSSELL, TYRAH
and their families

VALERIE, MEGAN, BRITTNEY, RUTH and HELEN

and to the featured DCJ staff
EVA, SHAE, KATH, YVONNE, REZA, ANASTASIA, DANI, MELANIE, KATE J, PAM, ELISE and KATE A

Directed & Filmed by
SASCHA ETTINGER EPSTEIN

Produced by
MARY MACRAE

Produced by
IAN DARLING

Produced by
KATE HODGES, MAJHID HEATH and HAYLEY B. JOHNSON

Editors
MATHEW EVANS and SALLY FRYER

Composer
HELENA CZAJKA

Sound Design
WES CHEW

Sound Recordists
RICHARD BOXHALL, PHILIP MYERS and SASCHA ETTINGER EPSTEIN

Edit Assistant
MEGAN FINLAY

Edit Assistant Placement supported by SBS Diversity Talent Escalator Program

Production Office Manager
ALISHA MANNING

SBS Head of Documentaries
JOSEPH MAXWELL

Commissioning Editor
SUSIE JONES

Post Facility BLUE POST

Colourist
JAMIE HEDIGER

Sound by Unison Sound
WES CHEW and LUKE MYNOTT

Titles Animation
PAUL DUCCO

Title Design
RACHEL DIGHT

Website Design
RHYS MORRIS

Education and Outreach funding
THE CALEDONIA FOUNDATION

With heartfelt thanks to all the DCJ staff we filmed with at:
SHELLHARBOUR CSC, EASTERN & CENTRAL SYDNEY CSC, MT DRUITT, ST GEORGE, WESTERN NSW DISTRICT CSCs, the HELPLINE and AFTER HOURS RESPONSE TEAM

and the many offices we visited

Photos by Alex Vaughan

PRINCIPAL PRODUCTION AND DEVELOPMENT FUNDING FROM
SHARK ISLAND PRODUCTIONS

PRODUCED IN ASSOCIATION WITH
SPECIAL BROADCASTING SERVICE

PRODUCED IN ASSOCIATION WITH
NOBLE SAVAGE PICTURES

PRINCIPAL PRODUCTION AND DEVELOPMENT FUNDING FROM
SCREEN AUSTRALIA

FINANCED WITH THE ASSISTANCE OF
SCREEN NSW

FINANCED WITH THE ASSISTANCE OF
DOCUMENTARY AUSTRALIA FOUNDATION