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Care of Children Bill - anything but

Judith Collins MP
National Party Families Spokeswoman

29 June 2004

Care of Children Bill - anything but

National Party Families spokeswoman Judith Collins says, "the Care of Children Bill is just another example of some positive initiatives coupled with and obscured by a social engineering agenda".

"Although the Bill proposes some positive reforms around opening the Family Court to limited scrutiny, it still will allow poor parenting and incompetence of professionals to escape scrutiny.

"Under the guise of children's rights, the Bill uses politically correct concepts that have little connection to the experience of parenting.

"The proposed changes to the guardianship laws would allow a parent to appoint as a guardian a short-term partner (1 year) by simply completing a form and registering it with the Family Court registrar. It makes a mockery of guardianship and the care of children.

"Replacing the universally understood concept of 'custody' with 'day-to-day care' reduces parents to 'care givers'.

"There is also a debate to be had about whether under-age girls should be able to consent to abortions without their parents' knowledge. Under the current law, reconfirmed in the Bill, girls as young as 10 can undergo a life-threatening operation without their parents being aware of the event.

"That leaves mum and dad to pick up the pieces without knowing the facts involved," says Ms Collins.

Ends

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