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Written Statement - Appointment of the next Children’s Commissioner for Wales

Lesley Griffiths, Minister for Communities and Tackling Poverty

I want to update you on the process of appointing the next Children’s Commissioner for Wales.

The current Children’s Commissioner’s term comes to an end on 28 February 2015 and the process of appointing his successor began on 23 April 2014 and was paused as a consequence of the recent reshuffle. In normal circumstances for regulated public appointments where a change of Minister happens, as in this instance, the Office for the Commissioner on Public Appointments has confirmed the appointment process would need to start again. Whilst the appointment of the Children’s Commissioner is not a regulated public appointment, we have followed the same principles as for a regulated appointment.

After careful consideration, I have decided to continue to follow the principles for public appointments and to begin the appointment process again from the start. Given the importance of the role of the Children’s Commissioner and my lead role as Minister with responsibility for children, this will also provide me with an opportunity to be part of the process from the beginning.

In making this decision, I have, of course, taken into consideration the candidates who had already progressed through the current appointment process and how this decision impacts on them.  My officials have been in contact with them to inform them of my decision, and to thank them for their candidature and patience whilst I have considered the way forward

I intend to continue to involve Assembly Members in the selection process by having a cross-party panel, as well as a young people’s panel, as the Commissioner will be their champion.