to listen to Māori?
Oranga Tamariki goes into PR overdrive with the release of a report into its successes as a Waitangi Tribunal hearing begins. Is now really the right time to release such a report? asks Bonnie Sumner.
Cynical. That is what’s being said about the timing of a new Oranga Tamariki report, released on the same day urgent hearings began at the Waitangi Tribunal into the harm being done to Māori by the child protection agency.
A raft of distinguished leaders spoke on Thursday and Friday, including the chair of the National Urban Māori Authority, Lady Tureiti Moxon, Helen Leahy, CEO of the South Island Whānau Ora commissioning agency, and Dame Iritana Tāwhiwhirangi.
But as the hearings began, Oranga Tamariki issued its own good news story by releasing a major report, press release and interviews with deputy chief executive Hoani Lambert on its progress in working with Māori.
Leonie Pihama, Professor at Ngā Wai a Te Tūī and spokesperson for Hands Of our Tamariki, says this kind of distraction attempt by Oranga Tamariki doesn’t surprise her.