The Vulnerable Children Bill, which was introduced to Parliament on 2 September 2013, has passed its first reading, and has been referred to the Social Services Select Committee. Public submissions on the Bill are due by 30 October 2013

The Bill follows on from the Government's White Paper for Vulnerable Children and the Children's Action Plan. If enacted, the Bill would (among other things) require DHBs to adopt and report on child protection policies, and would require DHBs to ensure that contracted providers of children's services also adopt and review child protection policies. The Bill also provides for new standard safety checks for employees in the Government or in Government-funded children's workforces (which includes health), and a restriction on the employment of persons with disqualifying convictions. Click here for more information on how to make a submission.