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The Child Welfare Act Committee

On 28 November 2014, a committee was appointed to consider ways of simplifying the Child Welfare Act. The current legislation is disjointed and confusing. There is also a need to bring the Act up to date.

The reasons for reviewing the Child Welfare Act are to improve legal safeguards for children and to create a more comprehensible body of legislation.

- I am pleased that we now have a committee charged with assessing how the Child Welfare Act should be designed so as to safeguard the best interests of the child, says Minister of Children, Equality and Social Inclusion Solveig Horne.The child welfare service comes into contact with children and families with increasingly complex challenges, and the way the service discharges its responsibilities is of central importance.

- I am concerned with the legal safeguards of children and their families in the child welfare service, not least bearing in mind the fact that the authorities are able to intervene forcibly in the private lives of individuals. In order to ensure the best interests of the child, we must have a clearer and more accessible legislation. The Act must be easy to understand for those who are to use it: the child welfare service and the children and families themselves, says the Minister.

The committee is to conduct a technical, linguistic and structural review of the Child Welfare Act, and consider ways of simplifying it.

In addition to simplifying the Child Welfare Act of 1992, the committee is to consider areas such as:

  • A Child Welfare Act appropriate for our times
  • The responsibilities of the child welfare service
  • Preventive work
  • The principles of the child welfare service
  • Party rights and contact arrangements
  • Any establishment of rights

Composition of the committee:

  1. Professor Trude Haugli, Tromsø, Chair
  2. Christian Børge Sørensen, Chair of County Social Welfare Board, Stavanger, member
  3. Frode Lauareid, lawyer, Kongsberg, member
  4. Cecilia Dinardi, assistant lawyer, Oslo, member
  5. Wenche Dahl Elde, lawyer/senior adviser, Oslo, member
  6. Arne Birger Krokeide, lawyer, Gjøvik, member
  7. Berit Roll Elgsaas, senior adviser, Drammen, member
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