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Children's Act 2014
This guide covers employers' obligations under the Children Act 2014.
On 1 July 2014, the Vulnerable Children Act 2014 and its regulations passed into law. The
name of the Act was changed to Children’s Act 2014 on 20 December 2018.
The Act forms part of the Children’s Action Plan and represents a cross-agency plan between
the Ministries of Education, Health, Justice, Social Development and NZ Police aimed at
improving the well-being of vulnerable children in New Zealand.
Government funded employers (“specified organisations”) must now conduct new vetting
and additional safety screening checks on all paid employees and contractors who work with
children. This also applies to unpaid people working with children as part of an educational
or vocational training course.
These worker safety checks have been progressively phased in from the 1 July 2015 to ensure
that specified organisations have sufficient time to screen their existing workforce and
implement the necessary processes for pre-employment screening.
The entire central State-funded workforce will need to have been safety checked by 1 July
2019. Businesses, unfunded non-government organisations, and voluntary organisations are
not covered by the requirements, but are encouraged to also adopt the new standards
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