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Wardens potential workforce as Māori step up on tamariki taking

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Māori wardens could play a role reducing the number of Māori children put in care.

That's the belief of Māori Council executive director Matthew Tukaki.

District Māori councils have statutory oversight of the wardens, and the organisation is working hard to revive those connections and win more resources for the voluntary group.

Mr Tukaki says the controversy over Oranga Tamariki uplifting babies highlights the need to re-establish a Māori community workforce and also mechanisms for Māori oversight.

"I think it’s important still that Māori measure the performance and the action that comes next because we’ve had a significant breakdown in trust here. We don’t trust the agency, we have little trust in the Government who no matter what the colour is, so that’s where we need to be. We need to also have a strong organisation - Māori Women’s Welfare League, Māori Council, whoever we are - to hold the Government to account on the actions that they take," he says.


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