The Ministry of Social Development (MSD) has begun a process to look at independent oversight of the child care and protection system, including Oranga Tamariki.
MSD has gathered feedback from government agencies, crown entities and existing oversight agencies. Now MSD is consulting with a wider audience that focuses on Māori, children and young people, and key stakeholders outside of government.
The closing date for feedback is 2 July 2018.
The Ministry has published a Cabinet paper from Minister for Social Development Carmel Sepuloni, Strengthening Independent Oversight of Children’s Issues and the Oranga Tamariki System: Consultation on Options (2018). The paper provides guidance for the current consultation process. It says:
"This consultation will give priority to hearing the views of children and young people, including those with disabilities, and with iwi and Māori (including the Oranga Tamariki Māori Design Group). Others I propose be consulted include:
- the Principal Judges in the Youth Court and Family Court
- other key individuals with particular expertise in the area, eg previous Children’s Commissioners and academics
- Pacific peoples representatives, including the Oranga Tamariki Pacific People's Panel
- groups and associations representing children, social workers, caregivers and others involved with the Oranga Tamariki system, such as VOYCE - Whakarongo Mai, the Social Workers Registration Board, Fostering Kids, YouthLaw Aotearoa
- non-government organisations involved in delivering services to children and young people in the Oranga Tamariki system, or who advocate for children’s rights and wellbeing, including those with a focus on disabled children and young people."
The Cabinet paper also outlines the current status and some issues related to oversight, and recommends options. Some of these recommendations could result in changes to legislation.
In addition to the cabinet paper, MSD has provided a consultation document, a question and answer document, and a template for submitting a response.
For more information and questions, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
This work is independent of the Royal Commission of Inquiry into Historical Abuse in State Care. The Royal Commission has recently finished consultation on the draft terms of reference for the inquiry. For more information see our previous new story, Royal Commission into Abuse in State Care launched and draft terms of reference released.
Children’s Minister Tracey Martin recently announced that Oranga Tamariki is holding hui around the country for Oranga Tamariki providers on "commissioning stronger services for children." Tracey Martin said "It was clear in talking with these providers that they wanted to know more about what Oranga Tamariki was doing so that they can plan and provide better services, which is why I asked the Ministry to host these hui."
As part of Budget 2018, the Government announced $269.9 million over the next four years for operating funding and to expand Oranga Tamariki. This includes $2.2 million for a one-year trial to "improve the Family Group Conference process for tamariki Māori."
Oranga Tamariki has also launched the new nationwide 24/7 Caregiver Guidance and Advice Line. It is a dedicated phone line to provide support and advice to Oranga Tamariki caregivers.
For other recent Oranga Tamariki news see the recent update from Gráinne Moss, Chief Executive for Oranga Tamariki.
A number of reports have been published in the last year related to Oranga Tamariki, the former Child, Youth and Family and children's rights more widely:
- MSD published a Cabinet paper and Regulatory Impact Statement (RIS) on national standards for children in care.
- The Children’s Convention Monitoring Group published the report Getting It Right: Building Blocks which looks at progress on and opportunities to improve children's rights in Aotearoa New Zealand.
- The UN Convention on the Rights of the Child Monitoring Group published a report examining how New Zealand has put the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child into practice.
- Researchers Bénédicte Rouland and Rhema Vaithianathan from Auckland University of Technology have published findings from research into the number of notifications to child protective services, substantiated maltreatment cases and out-of-home placements.
- Oranga Tamariki published a report about children who have been harmed while in state care.
- The Office of the Children's Commissioner published a report recommending improvements to Family Group Conferences.
Submitted on Thu, 2018-05-24 10:30