New Ministry should be for all children

The newly named Ministry of Vulnerable Children Tamariki Oranga could stigmatise the very children it should be helping, the Green Party said today.

The newly named Ministry of Vulnerable Children Tamariki Oranga could stigmatise the very children it should be helping, the Green Party said today.

“Research and experience shows the best support for our children and young people recognises trauma and focuses on building children’s strengths. No child or young person wants to be labelled as ‘vulnerable’,” said Green Party social development spokesperson Jan Logie.

“We need a Ministry for Children that focuses on improving the wellbeing of all children and families, rather than just some children who currently fit the Government’s overly targeted modelling.

“Many children and families go through tough times and may need some extra support. Vulnerability is not a static, immovable and unchangeable thing.

“A broad safety net is needed, and a Ministry of Vulnerable Children is only going to assist those at the very bottom of the heap.

“There also urgently needs to be a transition plan for the 5,000 children and young people currently in care, as there is a heightened risk to their wellbeing while the agency is restructured. That’s where the Minister’s focus should be, not on stigmatising them further.

“The 5,000 children and young people in care need the Minister’s attention today, and not to be conveniently overlooked by this Government and its proposed reforms,” Ms Logie said.

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