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Finally an equal right for children with disabilities

Finally an equal right for children with disabilities

IHC is welcoming the news that children with disability will finally get equal treatment when going into out of home care.

The Social Development Minister, Anne Tolley, announced today that a major state care reform and complete overhaul of Child, Youth and Family would take place. It is aiming to improve the long-term life outcomes for New Zealand’s most vulnerable population. Children with disabilities are over represented in New Zealand’s most vulnerable.

Trish Grant, IHC Director of Advocacy, says, “Children with disability who are living in poverty are over represented and are far more likely to be living in out of home care.”

IHC has been lobbying for years for the same care and protection for children with disabilities as others under the care or protection of the state.

“We are very pleased that the Government has recognised the need for change. The fact that children with a disability do not have the same safeguards in legislation, including legal representation, in terms of state intervention of care was something that we have been demanding to be addressed for years.”

“We are intrigued that the report includes a suggestion, which we’ll be watching closely, that special education services will be moved from the Ministry of Education and its functions placed under a new agency. While a proportion of children requiring state intervention have a disability, this recommendation would serve to label all children with a disability, regardless of their home situation, as disabled first, and children second.”

ENDS

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