January 27, 2021
Oranga Tamariki review chance for change
The chair of a new ministerial advisory group on Oranga Tamariki says reforming the agency is a chance to make real change for Māori.
Matthew Tukaki was appointed alongside Ngāti Whātua leader Dame Naida Glavish, Ngāi Tahu’s Ta Mark Solomon and former Child, Youth and Family chief social worker Shannon Pakura.
He says there are deeper problems than just organisation culture and social work practice, which reports like that from the Royal Commission on Abuse in State Care have highlighted.
"It's about entrenched poverty. It's about lack of housing, mental health, addiction services primary health, the loss of jobs, you name it, it's a multiplicity of different things. So we are charged with looking at how we take these different reports and recommendations, the issues on the table today, the things in particular Māori have been talking about for years now, and effect real change," Mr Tukaki says.
He says the Māori resurgence has consistently been stymied by the bureaucracy, whether it’s in welfare, education, justice or corrections, but the Government is now signalling it is ready for change.
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