Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | Video | Questions Of the Day | Search


Adoption law needs shake up

Spokesperson for Youth Affairs and
Youth Justice


Adoption law needs shake up

Labour’s Youth Justice spokesperson Jacinda Ardern is pushing to have New Zealand’s antiquated and discriminatory adoption laws modernised and updated.

Jacinda Ardern will next week table a Care of Children Law Reform Bill that requires the Law Commission to review and update adoption law to better reflect modern New Zealand, and put the interests of children at the heart of any decision-making about their future. It would replace the current Adoption Act which governs children and the relationships between them and their wider families – both adoptive and biological.

“The current Adoption Act needs changing. It is over 50 years old. It was written at a time when we had far more ‘stranger’ adoptions than we do now. It discriminates against prospective parents, doesn’t take into account whangai adoption and prevents children from being cared for in the best possible family environment,” Jacinda Ardern said.
She has written to Justice Minister Simon Power today, challenging the National Government to look at the issue.

“The Human Rights Commission has confirmed that a review of adoption law is long overdue. This is an issue that the Government should be taking charge of, but, given they have ruled out work in this area before, we are progressing it through this member’s bill.”

Jacinda Ardern’s move comes at the same time Adoption Action Inc has launched a campaign to have the half-century old legislation overhauled. It has filed a claim with the Human Rights Commission saying current laws breach the Bill of Rights and the Human Rights Act.

“The current Act fails to recognise that more than three quarters of children adopted today are not adopted by ‘strangers’ but by wider family, including relatives and long term partners of the biological parents.

“It also fails to take into account the number of legislative changes introduced over the past decade areas such as assisted reproduction technology, surrogacy and the legal status of de facto relationships and civil unions.”

She said her Bill is aimed at recognising developments in the fields of child protection, relationship status and whangai adoption practices, and would have the care and wellbeing of children at its core.

“Simon Power has been reported as saying the Act does potentially needed reviewing, but that it was not a high priority.

“The welfare of our children is paramount, and that should be reflected in legislation. We owe it to them and to their adoptive families, whatever form they may take,” Jacinda Ardern said.


© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Coronavirus: On The Addiction To Chinese Student Fees, And A Possible Future For RNZ Concert

Last week, Australian PM Scott Morrison extended its ban on foreign visitors from or passing through from mainland China – including Chinese students - for a third week. New Zealand has dutifully followed suit, with our travel ban extending until next Monday at least, presumably dependent to some extent on what Morrison decides to do later this week.
Our universities are now asking for an exemption to the travel ban for their Chinese students, who would still, the universities assure us, be subjected to strict quarantine procedures upon arrival. Given how the inability of the university system to care for its own students on campus made world news last year, that promise may not do much to reduce the coronavirus fears among the wider New Zealand public. More>>


2020 And Beyond: National’s Economic Plan

National Leader Simon Bridges has today outlined National’s economic plan heading into election 2020. “National understands the economy and how it impacts on New Zealanders day to day lives... More>>


Abortion Legislation Committee: Abortion Bill Report Presented To The House

The Abortion Legislation Committee has presented its report on the Abortion Legislation Bill to the House. A copy of the report is available here. The bill seeks to have abortion services provided like other health services... More>>


Local Government NZ: New Report A Pathfinder For Affordable Housing

A report released today by LGNZ provides a roadmap for councils finding their way through the complex policy, regulatory and market tools available to help enable more affordable housing developments for New Zealanders. With demand soaring, rents ... More>>


“Can Do Better”: Sallies Election Year Report Card

This year’s State of the Nation report by The Salvation Army offers a mixed bag of outcomes, with some significant headline progress - but also an ambitious list of “can do better”. Government action is delivering limited improvements... More>>


Gordon Campbell: On Concert Being Bled For RNZ Youth Station

Release the frequencies! If only all political crises could be resolved with such (suspicious) ease. In December, the RNZ board signed off on the idea for a new youth music channel on FM. More>>






InfoPages News Channels