The Children Legislation Amendment (Information Sharing) Bill 2017 (Vic) (the “Bill”) was assented on 10 April 2018 and has been enacted as the Children Legislation Amendment (Information Sharing) Act 2018 (Act No 11 of 2018) (the “Act”), with selected Parts of the Act having commenced on 11 April 2018.
The Explanatory Memorandum (the “EM”) indicates the object of the legislation (noted at Bill stage):
According to an article in, the concept for a better information sharing framework emerged from the recent Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse, along with a number of other coronial inquests and child death inquiries. The legislation is broadly supported by all relevant groups, but debate has surrounded the extent of the information that can be shared, and whether consent is required from the children wherever possible.
According to the Victoria Government, the outcome of the amending legislation has three core aims:
The Hon Jenny Mikakos MLC, (Minister for Families and Children - Victoria) said the reforms were crucial, with the current information sharing guidelines being too “complex and confusing”, preventing life-saving interventions.
The Minister commented:
A Victoria Governmentof 13 December 2017, stated the new legislation:
Some see the passing of the new legislation as a contentious issue with concerns it may “erode the rights of already vulnerable children”.
For example, in its submission to Government whilst at Bill stage, Jessie Taylor (President of the Human Rights Group(Victorian Council for Civil Liberties)) said the organisation supports the concept of streamlining child information sharing, but the legislation presented “goes too far”.
Ms Taylor commented at the time:
While acknowledging there will be many times when this confidential information will have to be shared without consent, Liberty Victoria argued that children should be able to give consent wherever possible.
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Vic Child Data Bill Is Passed -– Accessed 12 April 2018
Sharing Vital Information To Keep Kids Safe – Victoria Government(13 December 2017)
Vic child data bill is passed –- Accessed 12 April 2018
Children Legislation Amendment (Information Sharing) Bill 2017 (Vic) and Children Legislation Amendment (Information Sharing) Act 2017 (Vic) - Supporting information available from TimeBase LawOne Service.
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