MEMBER for Northern Tablelands Adam Marshall has today announced that people convicted and imprisoned for murder, the indecent or sexual assault of a child, child pornography, or incest with a child victim will now never be able to appeal to overturn a ban on them working with children.
Mr Marshall said that the new laws, which passed through State Parliament last week, applied a common sense approach to ensure that children were better protected.
“Most people will agree that convicted criminals who have committed serious sexual or violent offences against children and who have served jail time should never be allowed to work with our children,” Mr Marshall said.
“Under these new laws, if a person serves times for these crimes, then applies for a Working With Children Check (WWCC) and is refused, they cannot seek a review of that decision. People who have served a custodial sentence for these crimes will never be able to receive a WWCC.
“If they are on a good behaviour bond or intensive correction order, they will be excluded from seeking a review of their WWCC ban for the duration of that order.
“These changes are a significant improvement to the WWCC system in NSW and reflect recent recommendations from the Royal Commission into Institutional response to Child Sexual Abuse recommendations.”
Mr Marshall said that other changes included an Expert Advisory Panel comprised of forensic psychologists, psychiatrists, mental health and other specialists to provide guidance to the Children’s Guardian.
The Children’s Guardian and NCAT will be asked to apply ‘reasonable person’ and ‘public interest’ tests so WWCC decisions better reflect community standards.
“While a person’s future employment must be considered, nothing is more important than protecting our State’s most vulnerable people – our children,” Mr Marshall said.
Child Protection Legislation Amendment Bill 2015