Local Govt | National News Video | Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Search

 

Stand Children’s Services closing two residential villages

Stand Children’s Services consulting staff on closing two residential villages

Stand Children's Services Tū Māia Whānau is proposing to close its Children’s Villages at Otaki and Roxburgh.

The organisation would continue to operate its Intensive Family Wraparound Services in the central and southern regions, but would stop providing the residential trauma focused treatment programme at the end of June 2018.

Stand Chief Executive Dr Fiona Inkpen says all children and families currently working with Stand would continue to receive the Intensive Family Wraparound Service.

“I want to reassure our children and families that Stand is not going anywhere. The villages are one aspect of the services we provide and while it would be very sad to close these two, our priority remains supporting children and families to be safe, healthy and functioning well.”

Stand’s Children’s Villages provide a unique treatment service for children aged 5 to 12 who need support to recover from trauma.

Dr Inkpen says Stand hasn’t had a funding increase since 2009 and has been meeting operating shortfalls from its own reserves. Financial pressures increased last year following salary increases for the organisation’s staff.

“Pay rises were a priority for us to retain our specialist staff who support some of the country’s most vulnerable children and families, but who’ve been among the lowest paid in the sector.

“Our people deserve recognition for their work, and we needed to recruit and keep quality staff who make a real difference to these children’s lives.”

“Stand has been able to top-up Government funding for many years with prudent financial management and the sale of unused land.

“Unfortunately our reserves are now used up and we have made the difficult decision to consult with staff and the PSA about closing two of our villages. Our hope is this will be a temporary measure and we will be working with Oranga Tamariki and the Ministry of Education to rebuild services in both regions,” says Dr Inkpen.

For the 2017/18 financial year, Stand and Oranga Tamariki split the increased operating costs 50/50, however Stand would need $3 million extra, an increase of 18 per cent, to cover the pay rises, compensate for 9 years of inflation, and added costs such as Kiwisaver, to keep the villages open.

Minister for Children Tracey Martin told Stand the Government recognised the value of the organisation and its work, but the funding required could not be secured at this time because of restrictions on the Government budget.

If the proposal to close proceeds, 63 jobs will be lost across both regions and 380 children a year will miss out on the Children’s Village trauma treatment programme.

“We believe there is no alternative trauma focused treatment service for these children. Our future focus on rebuilding our service in these regions is to ensure they are able to receive the help they really need,” says Dr Inkpen.

“If the proposal proceeds, we would be offering redundancy, or where there are vacancies, staff could apply to transfer. Oranga Tamariki have also offered to identify employment opportunities for staff to consider.

“We have spoken to our people over the last two days. They understand the situation, and are being courageous in working to keep supporting children. They now have time to consider the information and respond. I will then consider their feedback and responses before making a final decision.

“Stand has evidence showing its services significantly improve the safety and wellbeing of children and we are one of the most cost effective in the sector. There is a real and important need for this treatment. We are not going away.”

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell: On Thompson+ Clark, And Russia’s FIFA World Cup

Daily, the coalition government keeps running into examples of the toxic legacy left behind by National – and just as regularly, even the simple fixes are proving stubbornly difficult to enact. Take the case of the security firm Thompson + Clark, which has been employed – time and again - by state agencies over the past decade, to spy on (and provide security against) ordinary New Zealanders engaged in lawful forms of protest. More>>

 

HiveMind: Fair Enough? How Should New Zealanders Be Taxed?

Have Your Say! Scoop and PEP invite you to share your issues, ideas and perspectives on the NZ tax system with other New Zealanders using Scoop’s HiveMind tool. This Tax HiveMind is intended to complement and feed into the review being run by the Government-appointed Tax Working Group (TWG), which is looking at the fairness, balance and structure of the tax system with a 10-year time horizon. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The GCSB’s Security Hang-Up With Russia

So our GCSB has chimed in, alongside its British, Australian and US allies, with warnings about a “fresh wave” of Russian cyber attacks, although the warning has been curiously framed. More>>

ALSO:

PM's Europe Trip: CHOGM & Bilateral Meetings

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern is in urope for the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM) in London and meetings with counterparts in Paris and Berlin. More>>

ALSO:

Hit And Run: AG Gives Approval For Inquiry

Attorney-General David Parker has today announced a Government Inquiry will be held into Operation Burnham and related events. The operation undertaken in Tirgiran Valley, Afghanistan, ... More>>

ALSO:

Addressing Climate Change: No New Offshore Exploration Permits

The Coalition Government is taking an important step to address climate change and create a clean, green and sustainable future for New Zealand, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern announced today. More>>

ALSO:

Road Safety Summit: Actions To Improve Identified

The Local Government Road Safety Summit held last week identified actions that will lead to lasting changes to road safety in New Zealand, says Associate Transport Minister Julie Anne Genter. More>>

ALSO:

 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • PARLIAMENT
  • POLITICS
  • REGIONAL
 
 

Featured InfoPages