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Children’s Amendment Bill

Parliament has called for written submissions on the Children's Amendment Bill [B18-2020]

On 31 August 2020, the Minister of Social Development tabled the Children's Amendment Bill [B18-2020] in Parliament. You can find copies of the bill and monitor its progress on this webpage.

The Bill was then referred to the Portfolio Committee on Social Development which will discuss the amendments and decide whether to pass them as they are or to recommend alternative amendments. The committee's decisions will be affected by the input that they receive from the public via written and oral submissions. You can therefore influence the final outcome by making a written and/or oral submission.

The Portfolio Committee's advert for submissions is pasted below:

'The Portfolio Committee on Social Development invites you to submit written comments on the Children's Amendment Bill [B18 – 2020]. Comments must be sent to Ms Lindiwe Ntsabo at childrens-amendment-bill@parliament.gov.za by no later than Friday, 27 November 2020.

In addition to making a written submission, you can indicate your interest in making a verbal presentation in your covering letter/email.'

Public hearings are provisionally scheduled to take place in February and March 2021.

The public hearings will be in Cape Town at Parliament or virtually on a zoom platform. When sending in your written submission, remember to indicate whether you want to make a verbal presentation. The committee secretary will get back to you in early 2021 with a reply on whether you have been allocated a slot.

When the public hearings are held, each presenter will be given between 10 to 15 minutes to present. The Chairperson is very strict with time therefore ensure you keep to your time limit and focus on your most important areas of support or opposition. After a batch of presentations, the members of parliament will ask questions and presenters will have an opportunity to reply.

Commentary on the Children's Amendment Bill to assist you in drafting your submission

We have prepared commentary on the proposed amendments in the bill and have started to lobby for changes.

Please contact us if you would like to support us or make a submission. Our position paper appears below:

NACSA position paper

Child Care and protection policy

Please find a copy of the child care and protection policy. DSD reported to the Portfolio Committee on Social Development that the National Child Care and Protection Policy was approved by Cabinet in October 2019.This policy is very important and should also guide the Children’s Amendment Bill.

Child Care and protection policy

Update on the tabled Children’s Amendment Bill, 2020

The portfolio committee on Social Development was briefed on 6 October by the Department of Social Development on amendments contained in the Children’s Amendment Act.

The Bill seeks to provide a comprehensive legal solution for specific challenges in relation to foster care.

There are also significant proposed amendments impacting adoptions. According to a media statement issued by the parliamentary communication services, concerns were expressed with the manner in which certain clauses, including a clause on the adoption processes were explained. The Department has been requested to provide a more detailed briefing on these sections. Opportunity will be provided for public comments on the bill from 16 October to 27 November 2020.

Abba will be making a written submission in collaboration with the National Adoption Coalition and other key stakeholders in the sector.

Should you be interested to get involved or to make a written submission, please read the position paper drafted by NACSA which appear here. This paper aims to contextualise adoptions and provides an explanation of the key issues pertaining to adoption and also proposes alternatives to these amendments.

Should you be interested to make a submission and you agree with the content under our position paper, you can draft your submission and send it to: Ms Lindiwe Ntsabo at childrens-amendment-bill@parliament.gov.za

Please feel free to email me on if you would like to have more information or if you support our position.

Please note the cut of date for written submissions is 27 November 2020. The more submissions in relation to key provisions, the more likely they may change the amendments.

Update on the Children’s Amendment Bill