VUW Seminar: Children, Families and the State - seminar one

Published: August 16, 2019

The first in a three-part seminar examining the historical, current, and future role of the State, around families' and children's involvement in the child welfare system.


Seminar One of the Victoria University seminar discussed how patterns of contact with the child protection system have changed over time, described socioeconomic inequalities within these contact patterns, and used risk-bias frameworks to understand the overrepresentation of certain demographic groups – in particular, Māori and poor children – within the child welfare system.

Grant Bennett (Oranga Tamariki Chief Social Worker and DCE Professional Practice), in this presentation, reinforced the focus that Oranga Tamariki has on keeping tamariki with their whanau and our progress towards reducing the amount of children in care.

The slides present a summary of findings on the subject and show rates of entry into care have decreased 25% over the past 10 years but that tamariki Māori are disproportionately represented in Oranga Tamariki care. The presentation then touches on effective responses that require holistic, multi-agency collaboration with a key role played by our iwi and Māori partners.