Behind Closed Doors part 2

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The amendment finally introduced in 1954 was a major change in that a person who needed to consent to the adoption could revoke the consent within 30 days of giving such consent. The stated aim was to give mothers adequate time to recover from the birth before giving final consent. However the intended consequence was to limit the time for rescinding consent as previously the mother had up until the time the Court legitimised the adoption. This could sometimes take up to two years.

Another change in 1954 was that the role of guardian ad litem was restricted to an Officer of the Children’s Welfare Department, representatives of an organisation approved by the Attorney General, or any other person approved by the Attorney General or Ministers of Religion. The era of the family friend being the guardian ad litem had at last come to a close however unqualified religious retained their august position until 1966.

 

The amendment finally introduced in 1954 was a major change in that a person who needed to consent to the adoption could revoke the consent within 30 days of giving such consent.