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NZ Child wellbeing Ailing

8 May 2007

NZ Child wellbeing Ailing: International Save the Children Report

Save the Children today released its eighth annual Mothers’ Index that ranks the best – and worst – places to be a mother and a child. The report compares the wellbeing of mothers and children in 140 countries.

The report shows New Zealand has a long way to go in protecting children under five. Out of 43 more developed countries, New Zealand ranks 20th in child wellbeing. In fact, New Zealand falls well behind Malta and Slovenia.

New Zealand’s under-5 mortality rate is twice is high as that of Iceland, and a third higher than many other more developed countries. Our under-5 mortality rate is higher than Croatia and Slovenia.

“Save the Children New Zealand reiterates its call for the Government to produce an annual child wellbeing report so that child welfare in New Zealand can be monitored and addressed effectively, ” says Save the Children New Zealand’s Executive Director, John Bowis.

“At present New Zealand does not have yearly statistics on child wellbeing. Without these, it is difficult to fully analyse progress and address the many issues facing children in New Zealand.”

Save the Children New Zealand recognises the upcoming passing of the Crimes Amendment Bill (Abolition of Force as a Justification for Child Discipline) as a significant step in the protection of children in New Zealand.

“Not only will the Bill better protect children, but it will also enable New Zealand to meet its international and moral responsibility to protect children from abuse. As a signatory to the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child in 1993 we have agreed to protect children from all types of mistreatment including physical punishment,” says Save the Children New Zealand’s Executive Director, John Bowis.

Save the Children works to deliver lasting improvements to children's lives both here in New Zealand and worldwide.

END

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