Save the Children New Zealand is outraged by the recent
examples of violence against children in Aotearoa –
including the video of an Oranga Tamariki staffer assaulting
a vulnerable child in care.
“In just five short days,
there have been three separate disturbing reports of serious
violence against children, including sexual abuse, assault
and videos showing violent fighting between children,” says
Advocacy and Research Director Jacqui Southey.
the video of an Oranga Tamariki staffer violently
restraining a vulnerable child in their care is shocking in
itself, worse still is that similar violent treatment by
that staffer had been reported, only for the complaint to go
“That it took a whistle blower to expose this
abuse reveals an underlying injustice in the system. Too
often the credibility of those who speak up is called into
question and the victim is played off against the
credibility of the perpetrator. In these situations,
children seldom win.
“The violent treatment of
children also shows we have a long way to go as a nation in
moving away from a culture of punishment, obedience and
control. Despite public tolerance of physical and violent
punishment of children declining, there are still those that
believe there is a place for using physical force to control
the behaviour of children.
“Every child in New Zealand
has the right to be protected from all forms of violence. It
is time that these rights were upheld for every one of our