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Big Business In Government's New Legislation

Big Business In Government's New Legislation

The Care of Children Bill, having its first reading in Parliament today, signals big business for New Zealand's family industry, ACT New Zealand Social Welfare Spokesman Dr Muriel Newman said today.

"Provisions in the Care of Children Bill will make our family law far more complex and costly," Dr Newman said.

"This Bill will result in the appointment of two more Family Court judges, additional court personnel, more counsellors and specialist report writers, more administrators and information service suppliers - as well as many more supervised contact providers. It will also expand database services and computer systems, and some court premises will be enlarged.

"In addition to all of these extra costs, there is expected to be a huge increase in the number of legal aid grants. While the total cost is estimated to be almost $8 million a year, this is almost certainly only the tip of the iceberg.

"As a result of Labour's new Children's Bill, the real cost to families will be more heartache. In this Bill, the Government had the opportunity to follow Australia's lead and simplify and streamline our family law regime, to reduce the collateral damage to families. Sadly, Labour - at huge ongoing cost to taxpayers - has decided to go in the opposite direction and make the situation far worse," Dr Newman said.

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