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Child Abuse Hui Call Close To Ministerial Support

Calls for hui on child abuse close to gaining Ministerial support

National's Maori Affairs Spokesperson Georgina te Heuheu is welcoming signs that the Minister of Maori Affairs will support her call for a nationwide hui on the abuse of children.

"Mr Horomia has indicated he sees merit in my proposal, which is news which warms my heart," Mrs te Heuheu says.

"I hope Parekura will soon give the idea his unequivocal support. This is a vitally important issue, and the time for action is now.

"Such a hui needs the support of Maori MPs from all parties, Maori leaders and organisations involved in working with these situations.

"Mr Horomia's own Maori colleagues support the idea, and I have already had a positive response from organisations such as Parentline and the Maori Womens Welfare League.

"The League's President, Jacqui te Kani recalled the days when District Health Nurses used to regularly call on mothers with babies to ensure healthy development and growth of their children.

"It is approaches such as this which must be considered at a nationwide hui. This will not be a talkfest, or a place for navel gazing. The hui must be charged with formulating a plan for immediate action, followed up with a vision for the long-term.

"Whatever the causes are for horrifying incidents such as those in recent weeks action is needed. The solutions lie within families, whanau and hapu, and those will come with positive leadership and support from all of those in positions of responsibility.

"I am hoping Mr Horomia will clarify soon whether he will support us in taking that action," Mrs te Heuheu said.

Ends

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