Uncontrollable was a term used in child welfare legislation to describe children that authorities believed to be undisciplined. In Tasmania, the term first appeared in the Industrial Schools Act in 1867. From 1896 to 1997, it was a reason for making a child a ward of state.
The 1867 Industrial Schools Act enabled parents to send an 'uncontrollable' child to an industrial school.
Under the 1896 Youthful Offenders, Destitute and Neglected Children Act, parents could surrender 'uncontrollable' children. This became the means whereby children who did not come under any other categories of neglect in the Act could become wards of state.
In 1918, under the Children of the State Act, being uncontrollable became a category of neglect. Its use persisted through other legislation until the passage of the Children, Young Persons and their Families Act in 1997. It refers to such children as being without 'adequate supervision and control'.
Sources used to compile this entry: ; Evans, Caroline, Protecting the Innocent: Tasmania's Neglected Children, Their Parents and State Care, 1890-1918, University of Tasmania, Hobart, 1999, 251 pp, http://eprints.utas.edu.au/14453/.
Prepared by: Caroline Evans
Created: 26 October 2011, Last modified: 3 March 2014