Media release - Closure of Te Oranga

Published: July 1, 2021

Please attribute to Oranga Tamariki Chief Executive Sir Wira Gardiner

Last night I informed the Minister for Children that the organisation will be closing our Care and Protection residence in Christchurch, Te Oranga.

This decision comes after a number of serious issues involving staff and tamariki have come to light over the past week.

My absolute priority is the tamariki currently staying at Te Oranga.

I believe that closing the facility while the multiple investigations are underway is the safest option for the children and young people.

Closing the facility is not a quick, instant or easy operation. 

We are already in the process of planning the safe transition of all the tamariki currently staying at Te Oranga to other appropriate care arrangements.

Each child’s needs are unique and we will be taking any necessary time to ensure that every one of them is looked after and is moved in a safe and phased way.

We have also started bringing in new staff to the residence.

I expect all my staff to meet a high standard of care across the board. Our first priority must always be the wellbeing, safety and care of tamariki and rangatahi.

Oranga Tamariki is undergoing a period of extensive change. I am doing everything possible to right the wrongs and fix the hurt.

From 12am Monday 5 July all current Te Oranga staff will be asked to stay at home on full pay.

Final decisions about the future of Te Oranga will only be made once all reviews and investigations are completed.