Everyone working with children needs to undergo a police check.

Police used to provide the service for free, but they’re about to start charging $8.50 per request.

“The regulations are now changing meaning that we have to pay for everything, up till now we haven’t had to pay for anything,” says Managing Director of PAUA, Raewyn Overton-Stuart.

Paua is a provider of early childhood home based care.

They say, they vet 600 to 1000 people per year at a cost of $8.50 plus GST per person.

Money they will now have to find elsewhere.

“There is a whole lot of extra costs that we have to consider, and we are still doing it out of the same funding budget,” says Mrs Overton-Stuart.

New Zealand Educational Institute says it is pro vetting but against having to foot the bill.

“Why do we have to pay that cost? If there is a cost involved, why doesn’t the government fund it for us?” says Charles Oliver, member of NZEI principals council.

Charles Oliver is also the principal of Wanganui Intermediate.

He estimates his school will need to find around 800 dollars a year to pay for vetting of new staff and volunteers.

“That’s 800 dollars that we can’t spend directly on our students for sports equipment, resources, and those sorts of things,” says Mr Oliver.

The Ministry of Education says it analysed police vetting in the education sector last year.

It found a number of unnecessary checks were being requested, including repeat vetting on volunteers within 3 years.

It says, if schools or education providers are check less than 20 people, they do not need to pay.

But that is cold comfort to organisations like Paua facing a new compliance cost.

Source: NZ Herald


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