Oranga Tamariki reveals new measures to avoid harm to children

Oranga Tamariki is rolling out a new monitoring system to help protect children. 

It consists of a new Safety of Children in Care Unit within Oranga Tamariki and a new series of measures for reporting harm.

Its aim is to provide a single place with an up-to-date view of all findings of harm for children in care.

Minister for Children Tracey Martin says, "This allows Oranga Tamariki to see the full picture of where harm is occurring, to identify higher risk areas which need to be investigated and most importantly to understand the risk factors and make changes to avoid such harm in the future.”

The Safety of Children in Care Unit was established in March and tasked with establishing a new series of measures to report on harm.

The measures emerged from research released by Oranga Tamariki in November 2017, in which it was recommended that an effective measure was needed to report on harm for all types of people causing the harm.

Oranga Tamariki will report quarterly on the number and percentage of children in care with findings of harm during the previous three months; a breakdown of these numbers by placement type, and the type of person who caused the harm (eg, caregiver, non-related adult, other child); actions taken to secure the immediate safety of children and the plans put in place to address the impact of the harm experienced; and actions taken against the person who caused the harm.

“It’s essential that we do everything we can to protect the children and young people in our care. A key part of that is understanding the true levels of harm and how and where it occurs,” says Martin.