We advocate for the interests, rights and wellbeing of children and young people

All our work aligns with our vision to make New Zealand a place where all children thrive.  You can find out more about how we're working to achieve this vision in the our work section.

Legislative framework

We have three key functions under the Children’s Commissioner Act 2003:

The Commissioner is a ‘National Preventative Mechanism’ under the Crimes of Torture Amendment Act 2003  and has responsibilities under the Optional Protocol to the United Nations Convention Against Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment (OPCAT).

Read a summary of our legislative mandate.

A wide set of statutory functions set out in a number of Acts and international conventions determines the scope of our work and promotes the rights and wellbeing of children. For more information on our legislative framework go to our legislation page.

The Responsible Minister

The Commissioner meets regularly with the Responsible Minister, Hon Carmel Sepuloni and provides briefings on issues relating to the interests, rights and welfare of children. We keep all other relevant Ministers informed of our work.

We publish our Statement of Intent, an annual Statement of Performance Expectations, and an Annual Report that is tabled in Parliament. See our corporate documents.

Minister Sepuloni has approved a 12-month extension to prepare our next Statement of Intent (SOI). This extension has been granted to allow enough time for the arrangements of the new Independent Children’s Monitor (ICM) and future governance of the Children’s Commissioner to be settled. Under this extension, our new SOI must be completed by the end of April 2021.

Minister Sepuloni has also granted a 3-month extension to provide a Statement of Performance Expectations (SPE) as we consider the implications of COVID-19 on our operations. Under this extension, our 2020/21 SPE must be completed by the end of July 2020.


Commissioner’s top priorities

Andrew 320

The Office of the Children’s Commissioner is focused on ensuring Aotearoa New Zealand is a place where all children can thrive. The current Children's Commissioner is Judge Andrew Becroft. Before taking up the position on 1 July 2016 he was New Zealand's Principal Youth Court Judge.

Children’s Commissioner’s top priorities

Advocacy and Monitoring

Read what our Strategy, Rights and Advice and Monitoring teams are doing to meet our statutory functions.

What we achieved in 2019/20