On 1 February 1983, the Victorian Department of Community Welfare Services introduced a mandatory ‘annual review of wardship’. The wardship reviews were designed to give children who are Wards, and their families, ‘protection against unnecessary State intervention’. The Department described the review as ‘an opportunity for the family, child and Departmental field workers to re-examine the case plan of the child and ensure it remains an appropriate one’. In 1984, the Department reported that this initiative was proving successful in reducing number of wards in Victoria. The wardship review policy demonstrates the increased emphasis during this period on returning wards to their families, or to independent living, as soon as it was appropriate to do so.