Legislative framework

Last update: 28 June 2022

The Office of the Children's Guardian operates under a framework of legislation.

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    Child Safe Scheme

    The Children’s Guardian Amendment (Child Safe Scheme) Bill 2021 was introduced into NSW Parliament on 12 May 2021.

    From 1 February 2022 certain child-related organisations including those in the Education, Early Childhood, Health, Community Service and Youth Justice sectors, must implement the Child Safe Standards, along with local councils, religious organisations providing services to children and sport and recreation organisations providing services to children.

    The scheme extends the powers of the Office of the Children’s Guardian to monitor, investigate and enforce implementation of the Child Safe Standards to support the safety and wellbeing of children and young people.

    Children’s Guardian Act 2019

    On 1 March 2020, the Children's Guardian Act 2019 came into effect. Powers and functions of the Children's Guardian from the Children and Young Persons (Care and Protection) Act 1998 and Adoption Act 2000 were consolidated into the new Act.

    Full details are in on the Legislation changes page.

    Children’s Guardian Regulation

    The Children's Guardian Regulation 2022 is the first regulation made under the Children’s Guardian Act 2019. It represents an important step towards promoting and prioritising the safety, welfare and wellbeing of children and young people placed in residential care.

    The Regulation was made on 1 April 2022 and regulations clarifying the head of entity for certain entities commenced on 1 April.

    Regulations providing the detail to support the operation of the residential care workers register will commence on 18 July 2022. The residential care workers register will facilitate exchange of information between residential care providers about an individual’s suitability to work, or continue to work, with children and young people in residential care.

    Regulations relating to the Children’s Guardian’s functions under the Children and Young Persons (Care and Protection) Regulation 2012, Children and Young Persons (Care and Protection) (Child Employment) Regulation 2015 and Adoption Regulation 2015 will be consolidated into the Children’s Guardian Regulation 2022 on 1 September 2022.

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