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07/15/2015 12:00:00 AM


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Reilly, James

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Bills

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Children (Amendment) Bill 2015 [Seanad]

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Report and Final Stages

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887

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2

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Children (Amendment) Bill 2015 [Seanad]\Report and Final Stages
Bills\Children (Amendment) Bill 2015 [Seanad]\Report and Final Stages

3 Part Topic Index

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Children (Amendment) Bill 2015 [Seanad]

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Report and Final Stages

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Senator


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Deputy James Reilly

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Deputy James Reilly

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James Reilly

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Snippet Contents:

Sections 18 and 19 of the Bill will apply a new disciplinary system to children subject to a detention order. Section 6 inserts a new section 88B in the Children Act. Section 88B will apply the same disciplinary system to children remanded in custody as applies to children subject to a detention order. Some exceptions to the application of the disciplinary system to children remanded in custody will necessarily apply such as forfeiture of remission which can only apply to a child subject to a detention order.
Amendment No. 2 proposes to insert a new subsection (3) into section 88B to provide that where a disciplinary inquiry is held in respect of a child remanded in custody, he or she shall be provided with an opportunity to be heard and respond to any allegation of a breach of discipline orally or in writing. Amendment No. 7 proposes to insert a new subsection (2A) into section 201 to provide that where a disciplinary inquiry is held in respect of a child in detention, he or she shall be provided with an opportunity to be heard and respond to any allegation of a breach of discipline orally or in writing.
Subsection (3) of section 201 which is being inserted into the principal Act provides for the procedure relating to an inquiry to be prescribed by the Minister. The procedure prescribed would include matters providing for fair procedures such as providing the child with an opportunity to be heard and respond to any allegation of a breach of discipline. It is intended that the operational and practical matters relating to such an inquiry will be prescribed and that they will include matters relating to fair procedures for a child. Matters such as giving an opportunity to be heard and respond orally or in writing are basic principles of fair procedures and natural justice and will be incorporated in the regulations made.
It is not proposed to incorporate some of the procedures relating to an inquiry in primary legislation and incorporate other procedures in secondary legislation. All matters relating to a disciplinary inquiry by the director will be prescribed in regulations. The regulations will apply to children subject to a detention order and children who are remanded in custody.
The issue of fair procedures proposed in the amendment will be comprehensively addressed in regulations to be adopted on foot of enactment of section 18(3). At a recent meeting with the Office of the Ombudsman for Children about the Bill my officials undertook to consult that office in the drafting of the regulations. I do not, therefore, propose to accept amendments Nos. 2 and 7.