The Minister responsible for Oranga Tamariki has finally responded over the weekend to the outrage within Māoridom at the Oranga Tamariki uplifts and her response is disgracefully tone deaf.
The Minister has attacked Māori for the “emotive” language they used at the protests last week and astoundingly criticised the use of the phrase, ‘stolen generation’ because she believes that demeans the experience of Aboriginals.
That the Minister would have the audacity to criticise critics of Oranga Tamariki on the grounds that criticism demeans Aboriginals is jaw dropping.
Instead of attacking Oranga Tamariki critics, the Minister needs to answer them.
Here are 10 simple questions the Minister needs to answer.
1 – Has the Minister watched the uplift video yet?
2 – If not, why not?
3 – Why is the Minister defending neoliberal welfare policy cooked up by the previous National Party as a means to weaponise CYFs old uplift policy?
4 – When will an independent body that can provide oversight to Oranga Tamariki uplifts be established?
5 – Will she allow parents of children uplifted access to legal aid to enable lawyers to challenge those uplifts?
6 – Why is big data being used to predict future crimes and will this Government review that policy?
7 – If children are being taken into State care, what assurances is she giving that those children will be safe in State care when some end up being abused?
8 – Will any Oranga Tamariki staff be reprimanded for lying and using deceit when attempting to steal the infant in the Oranga Tamariki footage?
9 – Does the Minister stand behind deceit and manipulations when seizing children?
10 – Did the Minister consider resigning after the footage was released. If not why not?
The Minister needs to spend less time attacking those protesting at this stolen generation policy and more time on being accountable for their outrageous behaviour.