Manukau Courier : March 15th 2011
6 MANUKAU COURIER, MARCH 15, 2011 NEWS Old Papatoetoe is as MAD as a MARCH hare We are giving away 4 weekly prizes of $1000 of New World Vouchers. Total Value $4000 BeintoWIN To enter just spend $20 or more at participating businesse Promotion runs from March 1st -- 31st You'll be MAD if you don't take advantage. (conditions apply) 3542662AA es You can trust St John Only St John medical alarms connect directly to St John and are installed by uniformed St John staff. Call 0800 50 23 23 for more information. STJOHN0910 ROSS ROBERTSON MP for Manukau East firstname.lastname@example.org Please phone for an appointment Otahuhu Town Hall Monday 9am-12pm OFFICES AT: 1/30 Kolmar Road, Papatoetoe Ph 278 9972 Fax 278 9971 7 Fulton Crescent, Otara. Ph 274 9231 Fax 274 9579 3339947AA Still time to enter We jumped the gun with our Friday article invit- ing readers to check out our e-edition and be in with a chance to win a double pass to The Music of Andrew Lloyd Webber. But you'll still get the opportunity to win if you go to www.manukaucour ier.co.nz today. Click on latest edition and follow the simple instructions. Browse though the paper and you'll find the competition printed on our special E-Edition Extra page. Good luck. Could Karl have been saved? When will this tragic, inhumane bashing and kicking of children stop? This time Ricki Leigh Scott Ngatai kicked his partner's two-year-old son to death for wetting his pants. Another name in this country's role of shame.. Look at the circumstances. The killer, jailed for a mini- mum 17 years, was stoned, regularly beaten by his own stepfather and believed chil- dren should harden up''. Over the years he had been in a drug scene which norm- alised brutality where viol- ence is not just okay but is downright cool''. His victim Karl Perigo- Check was the youngest of his mother's seven children. He never stood a chance. The real father of little unprotected Karl is doing time for the gang drive-by shooting of two-year-old Jhia Te Tua in Wanganui in 2007. Karl's mother was in a secret relationship'' with her son's killer and the pair of them were uncomfortable about who knew''. Presumably because word might get back to her trigger- happy husband in jail and/or his vicious drug gang mates. Heard enough? I certainly have -- time and time again, too often with Maori, drugs and gang involvement. Any child violence is totally unacceptable. But some incidences are much worse than others. From a telling speech by Paula Bennett to Maori leaders last August -- I've filed it as my Bible: Bennett: It's time to face up to the fact that Maori chil- dren and Maori babies are being beaten, abused and killed and it's time it stopped. It's time to look within iwi and hapu and have a back-up whanau for children in care. It's time to recognise young women who are head- ing for a life of desperation and poor parents -- and turn it around. Let's call it like it is. Let's be clear -- in New Zealand we know that Pakeha hurt and neglect Pakeha kids. Pacific hurt Pacific. And there are Maori who are beating, abusing, neglecting and in extreme cases even killing their chil- dren at a rate higher than we all want. For me it's not about com- paring ethnicities, it's about addressing this most serious of issues at all levels and for all ethnicities. So leaders I appeal to you all because our babies are being hurt. Last year 56 Maori children were hos- pitalised because of abuse. Of nearly 21,000 substan- tiated cases of sexual abuse, physical abuse, emotional abuse and neglect, 11,003 were Maori and four died. Those four dead Maori chil- dren account for half of all the child deaths by abuse last year. Only a quarter of New Zealand's children are Maori yet half of the children killed through family violence are Maori. Every five days a child under two is hospitalised because of abuse. Every year eight children are killed by those supposed to love and care for them, often their own family members. Those deaths and that serious abuse is unimagin- able. So I'm here to ask you as leaders, our kaumatua of Maoridom, to work with me.'' Paula Bennett then out- lined a plan for a much greater involvement by wha- nau and iwi and she said: I need you to help me because I can't do this alone. I am one voice in Cabinet and I need the many voices you can lend within your communities. I want these children in families, not in care. I know you'd like to see more Maori kids placed within their whanau and iwi. So how about this? What if we identified wha- nau now who wanted chil- dren and are able to take them? What if we asked iwi to look within themselves and ask what can we do? What if we developed a way to have them checked and ready to go? So children in care now and those in the future don't have to be placed by Child, Youth and Family but can be placed by iwi with iwi who're ready to take them. I want to know if you'll back me in this. And by that I mean -- will you put your hands in your own pockets and commit some resources to a joint effort? Because, quite frankly, the government doesn't have all the money for it right now. But I would like you also to consider being a part of the solution. So I'm putting the ideas on the table here among this circle of leaders. The first one is to fund a whanau finder' in Child, Youth and Family regions. Their role will be to track down external whanau who can play a role in decisions around care for the children. Many whanau are discon- nected, sometimes isolated as you know, and this is a way to reach those whanau members. It has the potential to be a powerful tool and I believe will have real results both in increasing the number of Maori children placed within whanau or iwi placements. Another idea is for Child, Youth and Family to work on new marae-based family group conferences for chil- dren under nine. Some family conferences are already held on marae. But I'm talking about both increasing these numbers and as an option to all wha- nau with young children. It's really important because it means Maori chil- dren are hosted in a cul- turally appropriate envir- onment and that means something to them. The chances are greater they'll be supported by their whanau in this environment too -- that's crucial because whanau must be part of the solution. Moving early and getting the right services and supports into whanau at the centre of the solution before things reach crisis point and helping them work towards independence is absolutely the way to strengthen our whanau. From my perspective, it's about doing everything we can to protect children. I need you as respected leaders to back me on this, to go back to hapu, iwi and your whanau and say it's time to face up to this.'' Paula Bennett is right. These children are not only entitled to the protection of the state but also the aroha of their whanau. The last time I challenged the Maori Party leaders on these deaths, they assured me that some magic com- munity health system, Wha- nau Ora, was the answer. How? When? And who by? How many more Maori chil- dren like little Karl have to die violently before they act? To contact Pat Booth email email@example.com or write care of this newspaper. All replies are open for publication unless marked Not For Publication.
March 11th 2011
March 17th 2011