South Australia

LANDMARK CHILD PROTECTION REFORMS PASS NSW LOWER HOUSE

Minister for Family and Community Services and Minister for Women Pru Goward today said
she was pleased the Government’s important reforms to child protection legislation had passed their first hurdle in the lower house of NSW Parliament.

“These reforms provide earlier intervention for vulnerable children. They allow for better support to parents at risk of losing their child, and they aim to require that open adoption should be considered if the courts have determined the child cannot be returned to their parents or placed with extended family, and must be removed permanently,” Ms Goward said.

“At its core, these reforms are all about providing a safe, stable home for life for vulnerable children.

“This legislation has been two years in the making, and comes after a comprehensive discussion paper was released in 2012.  Significant consultation has helped in the drafting of the Bill, and it has attracted widespread support from the community.”

NSW Labor made no submission to the discussion paper released in 2012.

The Bill now proceeds to the NSW Legislative Council for debate, and the Minister said she looks forward to seeing it passed into law with support from every parliamentarian with an interest in child protection.

“Regrettably, NSW Labor has at the eleventh hour foreshadowed its opposition to elements of
the Bill, including streamlining open adoption.  This appears to be an about-face on the position of Labor only two years ago.

NSW LABOR’S ABOUT-FACE ON ADOPTION

“Adoption of children who cannot in any circumstances stay with their family is by far the best option.”

Barbara Perry
Shadow Minister for Family and Community Services, Media Release, 21 Feb 2012

Compared to the current Labor spokesperson…

“We should wait to see stronger, more robust evidence of success (of adoption).”

Linda Burney
Shadow Minister for Family and Community Services, Hansard, 25 March 2014

Contact
Pru Goward

Member for Goulburn

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Authorised by Pru Goward, Parliament House, Macquarie Street, Sydney NSW 2000