Child Care (Amendment) Act 2007

3.

Amendment of section 29 of Principal Act.

3.— Section 29 of the Principal Act is amended by inserting the following subsections after subsection (4):

“(5) Nothing contained in this section shall operate to prohibit—

( a) the preparation of a report of proceedings under Part III, IV or VI by—

(i) a barrister or a solicitor,

(ii) subject to subsection (6), a person falling within a class of persons representing, and authorised in writing by, the Board, within the meaning of section 225(1) (as amended by section 18 of the Child Care (Amendment) Act 2007) of the Children Act 2001, for the purposes of this subsection, or

(iii) a person falling within any other class of persons specified in regulations made under subsection (7) for the purposes of this subsection,

( b) the publication of a report prepared in accordance with paragraph ( a), or

( c) the publication of the decision of any court in such proceedings,

in accordance with rules of court, provided that the report or decision does not contain any information which would enable the parties to the proceedings or any child to which the proceedings relate to be identified and, accordingly, unless in the special circumstances of the matter the court, for reasons which shall be specified in the direction, otherwise directs, a person referred to in paragraph ( a) may, for the purposes of preparing such a report—

(i) attend the proceedings, and

(ii) have access to any relevant court documents,

subject to any directions the court may give in that behalf.

(6) The Board referred to in subsection (5)( a)(ii) shall consult with the Minister before authorising a class of persons for the purposes of subsection (5).

(7) The Minister may, after consultation with the Minister for Justice, Equality and Law Reform, make regulations specifying a class of persons for the purposes of subsection (5) if the Minister is satisfied that the publication of reports prepared in accordance with subsection (5)( a) by persons falling within that class is likely to provide information which will assist in the better operation of this Act, in particular in relation to the care and protection of children.

(8) Nothing contained in this section shall be construed to prejudice the generality of—

( a) any other provision of this Act (including this Act as amended by the Child Care (Amendment) Act 2007) or any thing which may be done under any such provision, or

( b) section 267(2) of the Children Act 2001.

(9) In subsection (5), ‘proceedings’ include proceedings commenced but not completed before the commencement of that subsection.”.