Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | News Video | Crime | Employers | Housing | Immigration | Legal | Local Govt. | Maori | Welfare | Unions | Youth | Search

 


Improved vetting needed yesterday

Improved vetting needed yesterday

June 17, 2013

Improved vetting of Child, Youth & Family caregivers can't come soon enough, says the head of a mentoring programme that has successfully screened over 550 men since 1997.

Big Buddy CEO Richard Aston’s call follows the release of child abuse statistics showing a 32% rise over the last five years. More than 21,000 cases were reported last year, resulting in some 4000 children being placed in supposedly safe CYF homes. At least 23 of these children were further abused in care.

“This is simply unacceptable and should not be happening,” says Richard Aston. “Improved vetting should be an absolute priority for Government if we want to safeguard vulnerable children – particularly those taken into care. If Big Buddy can do it for fatherless boys, CYF can do it for children in their care.”

The Children’s Action Plan – released last October - promised new vetting and screening guidelines within six months and draft legislation by the end of this year.

“I wonder how that’s going,” says Richard Aston. “It’s simply not good enough for Prime Minister John Key to say the higher rates probably reflect increased reporting. 23 children being abused in care is 23 too many.”

The latest figures prompted District Court Judge Carolyn Henwood to call for an independent monitoring organisation for children in care.

Richard Aston says independent monitoring is a sensible suggestion, but “let’s start where the problem is - with the abusers - not the children. Let's get serious about protecting our children by urgently setting up an independent screening agency."

The call for urgent action is supported by Family Action CEO Michelle Clayton. “We work with children and adults who have experienced abuse and see the devastating effects on their lives and enormous impact on their families. Steps to protect children should be a priority.”

Ministry of Social Development deputy chief executive David Shanks said criminal checks for CYF placements only became compulsory early in 2012. He said the process had since been strengthened “with staff expected to do police checks if there were any concerns around family/whanau placements”.

But criminal checks are simply not good enough, says Richard Aston. "A police check is just one part of a much bigger screening process. We have developed a robust 360-degree process to ensure the safety of the fatherless boys we work with. We are confident we can identify emotionally unsafe men and active and potential sex offenders, who we would not accept as mentors. I challenge CYF to do the same, as an urgent priority."

www.bigbuddy.org.nz
www.familyaction.org.nz

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Parliament Today: State Opening Of Parliament

The House sits at 10.30am today before MPs are summoned to hear the Speech from the Throne in the Legislative Council Chamber.

The speech delivered by the Governor-General on the Government’s behalf outlines its priorities for this Parliament.

After this MPs will return to the House for the presentation of petitions and papers and the introduction of any bills.

The Government has five notices of motion on the Order Paper which can be debated. These relate to relating to the appointment of the Deputy Speaker, Assistant Speakers, the reinstatement of business in a carryover motion and one on “Entities to be deemed public organisations”. More>>

 

Tertiary Education: Students Doing It Tough As Fees Rise Again

The Government is making it increasingly difficult for Kiwis to gain tertiary education as fees continue to rise and access to student support becomes even more restricted, Labour’s Tertiary Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. More>>

ALSO:

Housing, Iraq: PM Press Conference – 20 October 2014

Prime Minister John Key met with press today to discuss:
• Housing prices and redevelopment in Auckland
• Discussions with Tony Abbott on the governmental response to ISIS, and New Zealand’s election to the UN Security Council More>>

ALSO:

Labour: Review Team Named, Leadership Campaign Starts

Labour’s New Zealand Council has appointed Bryan Gould as Convenor of its post-General Election Review. He will be joined on the Review Team by Hon Margaret Wilson, Stacey Morrison and Brian Corban.

ALSO:


Roy Morgan Poll: National Slips, Labour Hits Lows

The first New Zealand Roy Morgan Poll since the NZ Election shows National 43.5% (down 3.54% since the September 20 Election). This isn’t unusual, National support has dropped after each of John Key’s Election victories... However, support for the main opposition Labour Party has crashed to 22.5% (down 2.63% and the lowest support for Labour since the 1914 NZ Election as United Labour). More>>

ALSO:

In On First Round: New Zealand Wins Security Council Seat

Prime Minister John Key has welcomed New Zealand securing a place on the United Nations Security Council for the 2015-16 term. More>>

ALSO:

TPP Leak: Intellectual Property Text Confirms Risk - Jane Kelsey

The US is continuing its assault on generic medicines through numerous proposed changes to patent laws. ‘These are bound to impact on Pharmac if they are accepted’, according to Professor Kelsey... Copyright is another area of ongoing sensitivity... More>>

ALSO:

RMA: Smith Plans Reform To Ease Urban Development

Newly appointed Environment Minister Nick Smith has announced Resource Management Act reform to foster urban development, where high land prices and expensive resource consents are blocking efforts to provide affordable housing. More>>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On New Zealand getting involved (again) in other people's wars

Apparently, the Key government is still pondering how New Zealand will contribute to the fight against Islamic State. Long may it ponder, given the lack of consensus among our allies as to how to fight IS, where to fight it (Syria, Iraq, or both?) and with whose ground troops, pray tell? More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On child poverty, and David Shearer’s latest outburst

The politicisation of (a) the public service and (b) the operations of the Official Information Act have been highlighted by the policy advice package on child poverty that RNZ’s resolute political editor Brent Edwards has finally prised out of the Ministry of Social Development. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On the government’s review of security laws

So the Key government is about to launch a four week review of the ability of our existing legislation to deal with “suspected and returning foreign terrorist fighters, and other violent extremists.”

According to its terms of reference, the review will consider whether the SIS, GCSB and Police are sufficiently able right now to (a) investigate and monitor suspected and returning foreign terrorist fighters… More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Politics
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news