On 1st July 2014 the Vulnerable Children Act was passed into law, becoming the most significant change to child protection in New Zealand since the Children Young Persons and their Families Act, 1989.
The Vulnerable Children Act 2014 and the supporting Children’s Action Plan provide a solid platform of accountability and monitoring never before seen in child welfare. Many of the 30 specific initiatives that will support protecting children in New Zealand reflect the importance of providing a safe and competent children’s workforce - something Child Matters has long advocated for. This includes;
- A focus on working together, as Chief Executives of the Ministries of Education, Health, Justice, Social Development and NZ Police become jointly accountable for achieving results for the vulnerable children
- New obligations for vetting and screening processes for paid and unpaid staff working with children
- Requirements for all agencies working with children to have policies and reporting systems in place to recognise and report child abuse and neglect
- The Children’s Action Plan has also highlighted the need for legislation requiring frontline people who work with children to be trained to recognise the signs of child abuse.
Developed on the fundamental belief that no single agency alone can protect children, the Act heralds a new era and redefines what it means to work together to improve outcomes for vulnerable children.
Click here to read more about the Vulnerable Children Act 2014 and Children’s Action Plan:
Click here to read the Vulnerable Children Act 2014:
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