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Weekly Media Roundup

December 15, 2017 at 10:31 AM

Commissioner rejects coroner's child-register plan

The Children's Commissioner will not back a register to monitor all children despite a coroner saying it will save lives.

Coroner Wallace Bain made the recommendation after the brutal killing of Nia Glassie 10 years ago, and has repeated his call after considering the case of three-year-old Moko Rangitoheriri.


Child, Youth and Family blind to Moko warning signs

Three-year-old Moko Rangitoheriri was subjected to a prolonged and painful death by the very people who were meant to care for him.

A coroner has concluded that Oranga Tamariki's predecessor Child Youth and Family, a DHB and three community organisations were blind to the warning signs and failed to ask key questions in the weeks before.


What happened to little Moko: Inside what should have been the safety of his home

Barely able to see through his bruised and swollen face, little Moko Rangitoheriri pleaded for water, but his killers refused.

Instead, the three-year-old was locked in a room to spend the final days of his short life at the mercy of abusive caregivers, who dished out constant and severe beatings which left Moko unable to walk and incontinent.


Moko Rangitoheriri: Never more invisible, never more let down

OPINION: In the days leading to his death, Moko Rangitoheriri was never more invisible. 

The three-year-old knew nothing but pain, torture and a steady stream of grown-ups failing him in every way imaginable. 

The coroner's report into his death is gut-wrenching, but what stands outs are the "red flags". As Coroner Wallace Bain describes them, they are all the times that, with the benefit of hindsight, there had been an opportunity for Moko to be saved. 


Jackie Clark and The Aunties

How the pampered, private schooled daughter of Crown Lynn's founder became a breast baring battler for women.


Please, no more bloody tinned tomatoes!

This morning the tireless women’s refuge campaigner Jackie Clark published a Facebook post explaining why her organisation doesn’t want donations of tinned tomatoes. It was a message that resonated with Jess Berentson-Shaw, who studies how to help low income families thrive.


No, charities don’t want your inedible food items

There’s a widespread belief that charities and people living in poverty should just ‘be grateful’ for any food donations they receive. That’s a dangerous and damaging idea, argues Rebekah Graham.


Give generously - but please no tinned tomatoes or chickpeas, say charities

It might be the season for giving, but please, no more tinned tomatoes.

These, along with lentils and beans, are some of the items charities would rather do without, however desperate they are for food donations. 

Auckland-based refuge charity The Aunties has issued an outright ban on tinned tomatoes, saying they are useless for the women and children it supports. They don't have the ingredients to go with the food in the first place.


Invercargill policeman Ben McLean admits killing wife, shooting her new partner

Appearing in the High Court at Invercargill on Thursday, Benjamin Peter McLean, 48, a police officer for 10 years, pleaded guilty to the murder of his wife Verity and the attempted murder of her lover Garry Duggan on April 25 this year. He will be sentenced on December 18. MARTIN VAN BEYNEN reports.


Govt reveals $5bn families package: Will it affect you?

The government has confirmed a families income package it expects will lift about 88,000 New Zealand children out of poverty.

Finance Minister Grant Robertson has delivered the first major update of the government books since the Labour coalition government was elected.


The table that shows how much each family gets in mini-Budget

Families with children will receive a serious financial boost from the Government's new family package halfway through next year, with some receiving hundreds of dollars more a week.

The package, which was fully revealed on Thursday at the mini-Budget and will be passed with urgency before Christmas, cancels the previous government's tax cuts and replaces them with more generous support for families with children, all set to be introduced by July 1 2018.


Ministry for Vulnerable Children no more - Govt removes contentious word

The Government will remove the word "vulnerable" from the state care agency Oranga Tamariki: Ministry for Vulnerable Children. 

Children's Minister Tracey Martin said the ambit of the ministry also would be widened over time, and measures and targets would ensure the agency held the same aspirations for all children. 


Complaints about victim advocate Louise Nicholas' role in sex abuse investigations

Victims' advocate Louise Nicholas is caught up in an investigation by the police watchdog following complaints about the support role she plays in sex abuse inquiries.

The Rotorua woman rose to national attention after she went public in 2004 with the story of how she was raped by three police officers in the 1980s. Since then she has been outspoken in advocating for victim rights.

Nicholas is contracted to provide liaison with survivors of sex offending by staff from public agencies including Police and the Defence Force, and also works alongside police in a training role. But now, some women feel she has become too close to the agencies that she is supposed to keep watch on.


Why child poverty seems to be on the decline, according to the Children's Commissioner

The Children's Commissioner has credited charities with helping turn child poverty statistics around.

The latest Child Poverty Monitor showed a significant drop in children living in material hardship between 2015 and 2016, but only a small dip in the number of those living below the poverty line in terms of household income.


Hairdressers sign up to cut out domestic violence

Hairdressers are on the frontline in the fight against domestic violence.

They have teamed up with the Ministry of Social Development for the 'It's Not OK - Hairdressers Can Help' project' - as women often feel comfortable opening up to them.

This ground-breaking programme has resulted in dozens of at-risk families being referred to police since it launched. 


Does the Property (Relationships) Act work for modern families?

Nearly half of all children born last year were born to parents not married or in a civil union – and splitting up when you have property and children can be very complex. The Law Commission’s Stephen Day explains what the Property (Relationships) Act looks like now, and what it could look like with your input. 


Robert Hohua to serve at least 17 years in prison for murder of partner Marie Harlick

'Worse than a car crash' is how a senior detective described the injuries inflicted on Marie Harlick.

The daughter of Marie Harlick wakes up every night screaming. Her sister still calls Marie just to hear her voice on the answer phone. Her mother can't sleep and cries at the urupa where she's buried. Her brother is broken-hearted at the thought Marie will never meet his future children.

Today, the family of Harlick faced Robert Roupere Hohua - the man who stomped, punched and kicked her to death - and told him what he had taken away from them.

Hohua, 36, will serve at least 17 years of a life sentence in prison after being convicted of murdering Marie Harlick.


Minister says KidsCan funding a process, not a guarantee

KidsCan says it's been told it will lose its funding on 30 June next year.

The charity feeds 30,000 children a week across 700 New Zealand schools.

Its executive Julie Chapman told Checkpoint last night KidsCan provides 30,000 pairs of shoes, 50,000 pairs of socks, and 40,000 raincoats a year.

Ms Chapman said Oranga Tamariki told her the $350,000 would not be renewed on July 1, 2018.

However, the Minister for Children Tracey Martin said the charity's funding was always time-limited and would be up for assessment.


Why is our prison population booming and how can we fix things?

The new Justice Minister, Andrew Little, has wasted no time lamenting the terrible state of the prison system.

The number of prisoners has just passed a record 10,600 and, according to Little, could rise by almost 50 percent in the next decade.

We asked an ex-prisoner, a politician, an academic, an NGO worker and a lawyer how things have gotten so bad, and what can be done to reverse the rapidly escalating projections.


Police reviewing judge's decision to discharge man who assaulted wife

Police have confirmed they are "reviewing" a decision by a South Island judge to discharge a man without conviction after he violently assaulted his wife.

The man was sentenced in the Queenstown District Court on Monday on charges of assaulting his wife, his children and a male friend.


Unicef: Kids at risk of 'bedroom culture'

Unicef is warning that smartphones are fuelling a "bedroom culture" with online access for many children becoming more personal, more private and less supervised.

The agency, the United Nations' fund for children, says in its latest State of the World's Children report that one in every three internet users in the world is aged 18 and under.

It says the internet is a "game-changer for some of the world's most marginalised children, helping them fulfil their potential and break intergenerational cycles of poverty".

But it says the net is also creating a "bedroom culture".


Taranaki man jailed for indecently assaulting young children

A man has been jailed for five years for a series of sexual assaults on young children.

Since 2000, Taranaki man Shannon Justin Dravitski has abused four girls and two boys by indecently touching parts of their bodies.


Man allegedly raped female crew member on cruise ship docked in Dunedin

A man has been charged with sexual violation and rape of a cruise ship worker while the boat was docked in Dunedin.

The 33-year-old was expected to appear in the Dunedin District Court on Wednesday, but instead was remanded in custody by consent to appear in court on Friday.


Woman's vengeful ex-partner shared intimate videos

A man shared intimate videos of his ex-girlfriend with her family and friends in revenge because she had shown two people pictures of his private parts, a court has heard.

Wanting to give his former partner "a taste of her own medicine" after they broke up, David Vaughan Cameron posted two videos of her, each about a minute long, through Facebook, which caused her distress and embarrassment. 


Sexting: technology is changing what young people share online

The revelation that New Zealand children as young as six or seven are posting sexually explicit images of themselves online may come as a shock to many, especially parents. The reality is that for many teenagers today, engaging with explicit material is not uncommon.

Research conducted in Australia in 2015 found that 49 per cent of a sample of 2243 young people aged between 13 and 18 said they had sent a “sext”, a sexual picture or video of themselves, to another individual. More than two-thirds of the respondents had received sexual material.


Twelve days of Christmas: Dress for Success Auckland

Auckland Airport is giving $10,000 each to 12 charities as parts of its annual 12 Days of Christmas initiative. The Herald is profiling each initiative in the lead up to the big day. The $120,000 came from change dropped off by travellers at the airport this year.


Trio's appeal denied after neglect so bad it was 'comparable to physical assault'

Three people found guilty of "the most dreadful neglect" which caused the death of 76-year-old Ena Lai Dung, have had their appeals against their sentence dismissed.

The elderly woman died in a pool of her own urine and faeces, weighing just 29kg due to starvation, and in extreme pain from injuries that left her immobile.


Category: News Media