VUW seminar: Children, Families and the State - seminar two

Published: October 2, 2019

The second 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 Two discussed the current state climate and how recent policy changes – such as the integration of Tiriti o Waitangi and Children’s Rights into the Children, Young Persons, and Their Families Act – will impact ‘business-as-usual.’

There was a particular focus on multiple aspects of service delivery that determine which children enter care, such as how and which whānau are identified for early intervention/prevention or considered part of the child welfare system, social worker training and autonomy, the Family Court, interactions between state institutions and non-profit support services, and regional diversity in iwi’s involvement. These aimed to help shed light on the ambiguity these legislative changes have introduced into the role of state as children’s care providers.

Erin Judge (Oranga Tamariki Chief Legal Officer) discussed the current state of the care and protection system and the journey we need to take to improve it along with the looking at the duties of the Oranga Tamariki Chief Executive in relation to Te Tiriti.