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CYF Blame Unjustified, Says PSA

April 5, 2002

Blaming Child, Youth and Family for youth offending, as the police have done anonymously, is unrealistic and unjustified, PSA national secretary Bryce Fleury said today.

“Recent media reports of some police criticism of Child, Youth and Family would have us believe that CYF is wholly responsible for preventing youth offending. That is certainly not the case. CYF is in place to provide support to parents and families and social workers work hard in often difficult circumstances. Preventing and dealing with youth offending is a combined effort.”

Bryce Fleury said the department and the PSA have been working on addressing the issues of funding, staff training development, and ensuring systems can support the demands on PSA members.

“People cannot continue laying blame with social workers when this is a societal problem. Comments made in the media by senior police indicate that the department is expected to miraculously stop all youth offending.”

Bryce Fleury said he was pleased to read comments by a Wellington youth aid officer who works “at the coalface” that his staff worked well with “very good” social workers in the region and that Wellington did not have a youth crime problem.

[ends]

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