Oranga Tamariki’s decision will be appealed by the birth mother.

Lawyers for Janet Mason, Mawana's birth mother, are set to file an appeal.  (File photo)


Lawyers for Janet Mason, Mawana’s birth mother, are set to file an appeal. (File photo)

The birth mother of a young Maori girl in the care of a foster parent is going to appeal against a judge’s decision that the girl stay with the foster parents.

Family Court Judge Peter Kalinikos on Thursday dismissed a request by Oranga Tamariki / Ministry of Children to remove the girl and keep her with the Maori family. The ministry did not believe the couple could meet its cultural needs.

The case concerns a 6-year-old girl. Who has been living with the couple in rural Hawke’s Bay for almost three years..

Judge Kalinikos said Mawana would benefit from the couple’s “love, stability, care and parental competence,” while also benefiting from joint patronage with the girl’s birth mother and Mori Wanao in Wellington, who Can provide strong and reliable links. Wakhappapa and whānaungatanga (relationship) for several weeks in a year

Read more:
* Complaint on actions of senior judges in Oranga Tamariki case
* In the Oranga Tamariki case, the judge praised his seniors for reprimanding him.
* In Oranga Tamariki case, the judge reprimanded the senior judges for interfering.
* Oranga Tamariki wants to get the girl out of the couple after three years because she says her cultural needs are not being met.

The girl’s mother, Janet Mason’s lawyer, said she had been instructed to file an appeal in the High Court.

Mason said it was inappropriate for him to comment further on the matter.

Earlier on Friday, Ngati Kahunguno leader Ngahwi Tomwana said M ماori children should be with M ماori caregivers and would support an appeal.

Ngahiwi Tomoana, head of Ngāti Kahungunu iwi, who supported the ministry’s request, said the decision should be appealed.

“The days when judges can tell us we’re not so good anymore. It’s another matter for other people to think they know what’s best for Maori.”

“If it were to become normal, it would be another traffic flow out of our care, and I wouldn’t like to see it as normal.”

Family Court Judge Peter Kalinikos ruled that a young Maori girl should live with her foster parents.

John Copeland / Things.

Family Court Judge Peter Kalinikos ruled that a young Maori girl should live with her foster parents.

It was important to keep the turkey inside the ivy because “it is part of the matrix based on the relatives from the cradle to the grave and if you break it it will never be sewn”.

“If the Maori state was giving birth to children, there would be an uproar,” he said.

“We have the institutional capacity. We have the institutional knowledge. Now we have a deeper knowledge of our nano and hope. We just need to share resources and data so that we can deal effectively with our people. We are the government. Piles of money, piles of time and piles of resources will be saving and headaches.

Tomwana said she has no criticism of foster parents, “and I’m not knocking on the door of love and support and everything they provide.”

“But ultimately we see failures when people come out of this system. When they reach the age of 16 and come in search of their parents and their culture, they are in a hell of a mess. There are effects that are painful.


Havani Lambert, Oranga Tamariki’s deputy head, believes the appeal of children who are not needed should not be supported. (Video first published in October 2020)

Tomwana said there is no shortage of Ngati Kahingonu Ivy members who are caretakers.

“Since Attempted development at Hastings Hospital. We went to parents and families to see who would take care of the children and their parents and we got a great response.

“From now on, there should be no reason why a Maori child should not go to Maori.”

The judge said in his ruling that he acknowledged and respected Tomwana’s views, but that he had to make decisions based on legislation and principles that led him to adopt a holistic approach.

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