A call for action on the racism that still occurs within Child, Youth & Family Services

Let’s paint a picture and pull a few threads together and tell the holistic view of Oranga Tamariki and why they DO NOT deserve that name what so ever and why we need action immediately.

From this article: https://www.newsroom.co.nz/2019/05/08/575167/dont-take-my-baby

“Oranga Tamariki documentation for last year shows three Māori babies a week on average are being uplifted from maternity hospitals within three months of their births — a rate 100 percent higher than those termed ‘other’.”

Now let me take you on a journey.

This article from March 2019: https://www.newshub.co.nz/home/new-zealand/2019/03/more-than-half-of-children-abused-in-state-care-are-maori.html

“More than half of children abused in state care last year are Māori……

….In total, 227 kids were abused over six months, from July to December 2018, with 335 incidents of harm.

A lot of the abuse happened at homes where children were being looked after by a family caregiver, or a parent caregiver.

Most of the cases were for emotional or physical abuse, but there was also a significant amount of neglect and sexual abuse.”

Now let’s talk about the high rates of incarceration, especially for Māori women that have been in state care. Dr Tracey McIntosh’s interview from October last year on this is informative about the issues that surround it.

https://www.radionz.co.nz/national/programmes/sunday/audio/2018668665/tracey-mcintosh-investing-in-state-care-not-state-prisons

So the system takes our children, they abuse them and then they incarcerate them.

I am sick of hearing about our ‘leaders’ calling for investigations and inquiries into this. This has been happening for many years and we’ve been asking for inquiries for years. I’m also sick of hearing this is heartbreaking. You’ve been saying that for years and it’s still happening. Instead, I want you to take action. I want you to stop this. Stop this continued abuse that has been occurring for generations. That has intergenerational impacts on our people. I have seen in my own whānau the impacts of the abuse Oranga Tamariki have allowed to occur and still allow to continue to occur.

Let me end with this. We can talk about statistics all we like. We can talk about what’s happening here but let me all remind you of something. We are talking about our tamariki. These are our babies, children and teenagers. They are tamariki who rely on us and we as a nation have let them down. They needed our help and support and we allowed Oranga Tamariki to continue to do this. Not one more child should be uplifted, not one more child should be abused.