September 13, 2021
Family Court blocks iwi-backed foster switch
A bid by Oranga Tamariki to remove a 6-year old from her Pākehā foster parents and rehome her with a Māori woman has been blocked by the Family Court.
Stuff reports that in his decision, Judge Peter Callinicos criticised the agency, its chief executive and numerous members of its staff for putting ideology ahead of a child’s best interests.
The application had been supported by Ngāti Kahungunu Iwi, which did not think the couple could meet her cultural needs, Stuff reported.
The girl has spent three years with the couple in rural Hawkes Bay, after previously being traumatised and neglected.
The court appointed the girl’s birth mother as a guardian, along with one of her Pākehā foster parents and the woman Oranga Tamariki was attempting to rehome her with.