New Zealand Law Society - CYF wrongly recorded that father had sexual abuse convictions

CYF wrongly recorded that father had sexual abuse convictions

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A man complained to the Privacy Commissioner that Child Youth and Family (CYF) records incorrectly showed he had been jailed for sexual offending, and this information had never been corrected on his file.

The Commissioner says the Ministry of Social Development (MSD) had interfered with the man's privacy under principles 7 and 8 of the Privacy Act 1993. The man's complaint has been referred to the Director of Human Rights Proceedings for the case to be considered before the Human Rights Review Tribunal. 

Read the full case note on the Office of the Privacy Commissioner website.

The Commissioner says the man was incorrectly presented in the Family Court as having convictions for sexual offences.

“We noted in our final view that while Family Court is typically a closed court, those present in court are likely to discuss the events with their family and associates. The uncorrected allegations affected the man’s relationship with his child and wider family.

“We considered the stigma associated with convictions for sexual offending is such that to have it inaccurately recorded was sufficient to have caused him significant humiliation, significant loss of dignity and significant injury to his feelings. We formed a final view that the man experienced harm which met the threshold set out in section 66 of the Privacy Act.”