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Rankin calls for an 'Honest Debate On Child Abuse

'Children's Advocate' Christine Rankin calls for an 'Honest and Courageous Debate on Child Abuse'
Media Release
27 July 2007

Christine Rankin, CEO For the Sake of our Children Trust and Family First NZ agree that there should be an independent Inquiry into child abuse in New Zealand.

“I’m absolutely sick of it,” says Christine Rankin, CEO of For the Sake of our Children. “When you’re in the kind of arena we’re in, you wait week by week for this to happen again. You can almost count on it now.”

“It seems we can’t take it seriously. We get very upset by high-profile cases like this Rotorua case and the Kahui's, but there’s a barrier that means we can’t talk about the real issues – that barrier is political correctness.”

“The real issues are being masked. Maori feature hugely in the child abuse statistics, yet this fact is something that we’re not allowed to talk about and when I’ve raised this issue before, I’ve been accused of being racist.”

“I’m not racist. I’m simply stating the facts. Are we honest enough to tell the truth?”

“Approximately 60% of child abuse is in Maori families yet they represent only 15% of the population.”

Rankin questions why Maori leaders aren’t speaking up more strongly on this issue.

“They are leaving a legacy to their people and to this country – they deny that it is a real issue, talk around it, and any Maori leader who speaks up on this seems to quickly withdraw from their strong and courageous stance. Why won’t they fight this issue?”

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“There are also no repercussions for child abuse. The recent sentencing of an Otara couple to four years each for beating a child to death is disgraceful. There is no responsibility and no consequences.”

The OECD and CYF reports consistently identify drug and alcohol abuse, and family breakdown as key contributors to child abuse. There are no consequences for these irresponsible thugs who cause untold suffering to our children.

“The anti-smacking bill was never going to make a difference. These abusers don’t even know about section 59 and they don’t care anyway. Child abuse had no relevance to the smacking law.”

Christine Rankin is asking for an independent Inquiry on child abuse - separate from political agendas and correctness – and comprising community leaders who are willing to identify and tackle the real causes of child abuse.


© Scoop Media

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