Amendments to the Children’s Protection Act 1993 that will make the safety of children the paramount consideration in child protection matters have passed Parliament.
The amendments make clear that the paramount consideration in child protection is the safety of children.
The amendments also establish a scheme which enables the Chief Executive of the Department of Education and Child Development to remove a child from a parent that has been convicted of a qualifying offence, or to restrain a person residing with a child when that person has been convicted of a qualifying offence.
These offences include murder, manslaughter, criminal neglect, causing serious harm and acts endangering life or creating risk of serious harm when the victim is a child in their care. It also includes attempts of these offences.
The Bill also introduces a definition of cumulative harm, to be considered in the assessment of risk to a child.
The amendments are in response to the findings of a Coronial inquiry into the death of Chloe Valentine. An update of progress on the recommendations is available in the Chloe Valentine Inquest progress report (PDF 215KB).