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Maharey Pied Piper On Road To Ruin

Maharey Pied Piper On Road To Ruin

The Social Development Minister's announcement today, that Child, Youth and Family will receive a cash injection of more than $12 million dollars, raises serious questions about the Government's ability to lead on this issue," ACT New Zealand Social Welfare Spokesman Dr Muriel Newman said today.

"Mr Maharey's statement, that the Government will pour $12.184 million into CYF - and increase its baseline by $13.164 million in future years - has raised more questions than it answers," Dr Newman said.

"For two years this Minister has been grandstanding over cash injections, a new ethic in the department, and the fact that unallocated cases are being addressed. The reality is, however, that staff turnover remains high, the number of abuse notifications has reached record levels, and the number of unallocated cases still stands at more than 1,300 with almost 1,000 of these being classified as `urgent'.

"The reason for this remorseless rise in child abuse notifications is that New Zealand's increase in family breakdown is creating record numbers of sole-parent families. As a result, the number of at-risk children is growing.

"Mr Maharey has no answers, and his announcement today exposes the hollow rhetoric that his so-called "generous injections" over the last two budgets will fix the problem.

"Until New Zealand addresses the serious issue of family breakdown and reverses the rapid rise in sole parenting - which now sees 31 percent of all families with children as sole parent families - the number of children at risk of poor health, education and limited life opportunities will continue to rise.

"Unfortunately, the chances that this department's politically correct Minister can take a lead in implementing the long-term solutions that are needed, is nil. By the very nature of this issue, it is our children who will continue to be damaged and suffer from his inability to perform," Dr Newman said.

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