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Report On Care Of Maori Children Praised

National Social Services spokesperson Bob Simcock said he supported a report which says Maori children should be placed where they can receive the best care.

"I am pleased Child Youth and Family has had the courage to write this report.

The report is in direct conflict with Associate Social Services and Maori Affairs Minister Tariana Turia who has taken a strong stand that Maori children should stay with whanau regardless of the circumstances.

"In this report the department is saying publicly what has been said in private for the past two years - moku should be with the best and safest carer they can be and that may not necessarily be with family.

"It is the same principle as that taken with pakeha children. Family are usually the best carers but sometimes they clearly are not.

"We need to know whether this report is Government policy or is an opportunity for the Government to slam one of its departments for being honest. I am curious also to know why the planned release of this report a few weeks ago was stopped.

"It has come out today because it was leaked to the media.

"Tariana Turia's doesn't want a bar of what this report suggests and Steve Maharey is playing it down as much as he can. The Government has a responsibility to ensure that all children get the best possible care," Mr Simcock said.


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