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Written Answers - Legislative Programme

Tuesday, 15 May 2012

Dáil Éireann Debate
Vol. 765 No. 3

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 381.  Deputy Brendan Griffin Information on Brendan Griffin Zoom on Brendan Griffin  asked the Minister for Justice and Equality Information on Alan Shatter Zoom on Alan Shatter  when the Spent Law will be in place and the time frame for same. [24119/12]

Minister for Justice and Equality (Deputy Alan Shatter): Information on Alan Shatter Zoom on Alan Shatter The Criminal Justice (Spent Convictions) Bill 2012 was approved for publication by the Government on 1 May 2012 and was presented to the Seanad on 2 May 2012, where it is currently awaiting Second Stage. The Bill builds on the recommendations in the 2007 Law Reform Commission Report on Spent Convictions in allowing former offenders to withhold details of certain qualifying convictions once certain conditions have been met and an appropriate conviction-free period has elapsed. However, all past convictions will have to be disclosed by persons who wish to work with children and vulnerable adults and when they are applying for certain sensitive positions in the public service. In that regard, the Bill will have to dovetail with the National Vetting Bureau Bill that I intend to publish shortly.

The timeframe for enactment will depend on the ordering of business in the Houses of the Oireachtas and on any amendments that may be tabled during the Bill’s passage. Having said that, the Deputy can be assured that the Government wishes to see this Bill enacted as quickly as possible.

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