2857. Hon Alison Xamon to the Leader of the House representing the Minister for Child Protection:
I refer to the free confidential phone counselling service for young people, Kids Helpline, and I ask:
(a) how much funding was provided by the Western Australian Government to Kids Helpline in 2019;
(b) how many contacts from Western Australian children and young people were made to the Kids Helpline in 2019:
(i) by phone; and
(ii) by email;
(iii) by web chat;
(c) how many of the phone contacts were not answered; and
(d) how many of the email contacts were not answered;
(e) how many of the web chat contacts were not answered?
Hon Sue Ellery replied:
(a) In 2019 the Department of Communities provided $63,943 (ex GST) for the Kids Helpline service.
(b) In 2019, the following contacts were made from Western Australian children and young people:
(i) by phone – 17,878
(ii) by email – 1,158
(iii) by web chat – 8,747
(c) 10,291 phone contacts were not answered.
(d) None of the email contacts were not answered.
(e) 5,065 of the web chat contacts were not answered.
When phone calling the service, callers will hear a 20-second introduction message before their call is progressed to a counsellor. Approximately 20 per cent of unanswered calls are callers hanging up before the completion of the 20-second message.
There are ‘immediate hang-ups’ where callers hang up immediately after the 20-second message. While Kids Helpline could technically answer these calls, it is very difficult to do so if the caller hangs up within one or two seconds.