The number of newborn babies being taken away from their mothers into government care is leaping, new figures show.
Over the last three years, 574 babies ended up in Government care within the first month of their life, according to figures released under the Official Information Act. …
The number has climbed over the last three years, with 225 in 2017 – 38 more than 2016 and 63 more than 2015.
So a modest increase.
Forty five of these were taken from their mum the day they were born.
Those 45 would be from mums who have such a horrendous history of abuse and neglect that they know they will not be allowed to keep any further children. However for some reasons they keep getting pregnant.
Child protection agency Oranga Tamariki said some of the babies would have been taken for planned adoption rather than protection reasons and taking any child away was a last resort.
Yep. There will have been multiple incidences of abuse in the past.
Paora Moyle, a social worker of 20 years, now working on a PhD around state care, said more children are being uplifted from their family than ever before.
The practice was doing more harm than good for the babies, Moyle said.
Moyle, who used to work for Oranga Tamariki – then known as Child Youth and Family – said caregivers aren’t always screened and social workers are over-worked and under-resourced.
That is not a reason to leave children with parents who will neglect and abuse them. That is a reason to do better screening and more resourcing.
More than half of these newborns are uplifted from young Māori mothers, Moyle said.
“You’ve got institutional racism rife.
Or more mothers who abuse their kids are Maori. Blaming every disparity in racism is tiring.
A large proportion of eventual prisoners come from a state care background, she said.
“There are more children harmed going into state care than there are being saved.
State care is a terrible option. It is the second worst option. Yes it has terrible outcomes. But leaving kids with parents who are incapable or unwilling of raising kids safely is the worst option.