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Lazy Tolley misrepresents the facts - again

Hon Ruth Dyson
Associate Minister for Social Development and Employment (Child, Youth and Family Services)

11 September 2006 Media Statement

Lazy Tolley misrepresents the facts - again

Anne Tolley and the National Party should check its facts before issuing lazy and incorrect releases about New Zealand's frontline social workers, says Child Youth and Family Services Minister Ruth Dyson.

"National MP Anne Tolley's release is an indication that once again she either too lazy to read the information given to her or she is incapable of understanding it," says Ms Dyson.

"The Social Workers Registration Act came into effect in April 2003 and you couldn't apply to be registered until 1 October 2004 so having 411 staff registered as at 31 August, in less than two years, is in fact a major achievement for CYF.

"Child, Youth and Family is committed to having its social work staff gain social work registration as part of its ongoing support for professionalisation of its workforce.

"Professionalisation involves more than just registration - over the past five years, the percentage of CYF social work staff with a recognised social work qualification has increased from 45% to 65% as of the end of August 06. A further 99 staff are currently being supported by CYF to complete a social work qualification," said Ms Dyson.

In addition CYF has developed and delivers a number of professional development programmes unique to social workers working in the statutory arena - two of these programmes have been developed in partnership with the School of Social Work at Massey University who also deliver programmes for CYF.

"This is a repeat of her previous lazy and factually inaccurate statement in August where she misrepresented comments I made in a radio interview. Anne Tolley and the National Party should be supporting our social workers, instead of fabricating irresponsible press releases."

ENDS

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