September 21, 2020
Hearing harvest stories of historic abuse
The New Zealand Māori Council is urging Māori with experience of abuse in state or faith-based care to speak to the Royal Commission.
The commission started open hearings in Auckland this week after 500 private hearings with survivors and collecting thousands of historic documents.
Council executive director Matthew Tukaki, who sits on the commission’s taumata, says more than 60 percent of the children in the care of state-run institutions and borstals from the 1950s on were Māori, and many have been unable to find a place to tell their stories.
He says his experience working on the Australian Royal Commission into abuse indicated some unsavory connections to this side of the Tasman.
"I’ve said to all Māori who will listen, please if you have a story to tell and you feel comfortable telling it there will be an environment conducive to that. Please have your voices heard and especially when it comes to the faith-based institutions, the borstals, the schools, all these things where we know in Australia a huge number of New Zealanders who participated in the system here were sent, basically to hide from their evil," Mr. Tukaki says.
He hopes to see prosecutions for historic abuse arising out of the commission’s work.
Copyright © 2020, UMA Broadcasting Ltd: www.waateanews.com