The Children Act 2022 replaces Children Act 2001

11 July 2022

It has taken years of engagement to develop the Children Bill 2021, which was assented by President Uhuru Kenyatta on 6th July 2022 replacing the Children’s Act 2001. The new Children’s Act, 2022 is a significant improvement to the Children’s Act 2001. Some of the new additions and improvements to the law include:

  • Provides ways of addressing vulnerable children’s concerns
  • New definitions capturing the emerging trends and issues have been added like online abuse, child trafficking, and radicalization among others.
  • The law established a Child Welfare Fund funded through the national exchequer under the aegis of the Public Finance Management Act. The Children Act expressly to mandates County Governments to establish child welfare schemes and child care facilities in their respective counties besides taking charge of pre-primary education.
  • The age of criminal responsibility among children have been raised from the current 8 years to 12 years
  • Children in Conflict with the law after committing minor offenses will not be taken through the court system; they will be diverted to community-based systems.
  • All Children in Conflict with the law will have access to free legal aid as they navigate through the justice system.
  • Children living with disability will be accorded free medical treatment, special care, education and training
  • Kinship adoption has been included in the law where a relative is able to adopt a child in his lineage in a much cheaper and faster way with less legal technicalities.
  • The Children Act, 2022 gives priority to family based alternative care as opposed to institutionalization of children in Children Homes.
  • Children Act, 2022 emphasizes on the right of children to parental care through inclusion of alternative care services such as:
    • Kinship
    • Guardianship
    • Adoption
    • Kafaalah
    • Foster care
    • Care in emergencies
    • Temporary shelter
    • Supported Independent living
    • Supported child-headed households
    • Aftercare
  • For more information download the bill here  The Children Act 2022