March 16, 2016
Maori shut out of prison rehab
A prison reform advocate says the refusal by Corrections and other government agencies to partner with Maori has resulted in a succession of ineffective rehabilitation programmes.
In June the Waitangi Tribunal will look at high imprisonment and reoffending rates among Maori.
Just Speak senior advisor Kim Workman says Maori have tried since the 1980s to develop partnerships with the crown to address Article 3 issues such as the way Maori were treated in the criminal justice system, but there has been strong resistance.
He says any kaupapa Maori initiatives are on the department’s terms.
"Government agencies generally have addressed or attempted to close the gap by addressing the need as as they see them but have often cut Maori out of the action and have not allowed Maori organisations or services to be run by Maori for Maori within those entities or organisations," Mr Workman says.
He says for the past five or six years the gaps have been increasing, and nothing Corrections is doing is changing that in any significant way.
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