The Children’s Court of NSW is working hard to reduce the risks associated with the spread of coronavirus (COVID-19) and is continuing to follow guidelines implemented by the Federal and State Governments.
Children’s Court rooms are closed to the general public. However, parties are normally required to wait in the public foyer before their matter is dealt with.
The Children’s Court has already introduced measures to reduce the risk of infection for anyone attending proceedings by ensuring there is appropriate spacing between people in the public foyer.
If a participant doesn’t need to attend the next listing, lawyers are being asked to make a formal request to excuse the person if appropriate.
Participants are also being asked to limit the number of family members and supporters who attend court, other than their legal representatives, to a maximum of two people.
Legal practitioners should also consult with their clients to determine if they can appear for a directions hearing via telephone in care proceedings.
Further measures may be introduced if the pandemic situation escalates, but will be done in close consultation with major stakeholders including NSW Health, Youth Justice, Legal Aid, the Aboriginal Legal Service, and the NSW Police Force.