Tuesday, 30 October 2007



New Psychological Testing of Children is Abusive

Sunday, 28 October 2007, 1:38 pm
Press Release: Citizens Commission on Human Rights

Citizens Commission On Human Rights New Zealand Established in 1969 by the Church of Scientology to investigate and expose psychiatric violations of human rights

New Psychological Testing of Children is Abusive

The Citizens Commission on Human Rights are warning people about behavioural screening programmes for children and the use of drugs for learning disorders in an exhibition now on.

Commission director, Mr Steve Green is concerned about the new “b4 school checks” pilot programme currently being advertised by the Counties Manukau District Health Board because of their psychological screening component for four-year-olds.

“People are not aware that these psychological screening programmes are not based on medicine and the assessments often lead to treatment of fictitious mental disorders,” Mr Green said.

The Commission said that the psychological testing of four-year-old for behavioural problems to be used by the “b4 school check” programme is a five-minute checklist a parent fills out.

Such tests, the Commission claims, are unscientific as they claim that a small child who cannot stay still for long and who fidgets is abnormal.

The Goodman Strengths and Difficulties Questionnaire is the one being used in the “b4 school check” for psychological and behavioural problems and its results can be wildly out with over 50% of children apparently abnormal, the Commission claims.

The Commission fully supports the actual health checks for the “b4 school checks” but says the psychological testing stigmatizes children with mental disorders that in reality do not exist.

“These labels stay with a person for ever and most people are not aware that mental disorders are voted into being by a panel of psychiatrists at a convention. There are no scientific or medical tests that support mental illness or disorders,” said Mr Green.

He also said that psychiatry has no test for normal behaviour and so the abnormal can be cultural and language differences which are not taken into account.




Children's Commissioner backs charter
Tuesday, 30 October 2007, 11:36 am
Press Release: Office of the Children's Commissioner

Children's Commissioner backs charter for children and young people in care

As a champion for the rights of every child and young person in New Zealand, Children's Commissioner Dr Cindy Kiro supports the charter for children and young people in care, launched by Child, Youth and Family (CYF) today.

"The development of this charter and its implementation plan shows Child, Youth and Family's commitment to ensuring that children and young peoples' rights are promoted and protected while they are in care.

"My office has heard directly from children and young people in care that they want a pamphlet on their rights and they want to know who to talk with if they have concerns or complaints.

"Four young people spoke at the Australasian Conference on Child Abuse and Neglect, hosted by my office in February last year (2006). When asked what children and young people in care need in order to blossom, they identified four important areas that required attention. These are: stigma, rights, resilience and stability.

"One of the speakers pointed out that the care system is there to protect them from others, not others from them.

"Being placed in care can be an extremely traumatic time for children and young people. I support them in their desire to have up-to-date information about their rights and about what to do if they are not happy with their situation. It is important that we listen when children and young people voice their opinions and that they can see the powerful effect they can have on policy and practice when they do.

"I believe it is important that all children and young people in New Zealand are aware that they have individual rights, as per the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCROC).

"I commend CYF on its implementation plan that allows for all children and young people to receive a copy of the charter as they come into care; for those already in care to have a meeting with their social worker to explain what the charter means to them; and for all caregivers to be made aware of the charter as well. I believe this process will be valuable in developing a relationship of trust that children and young people in care must have with their social worker.

"We are keen to see the charter work in tandem with a youth-friendly complaints process.

"We would also like to see the charter embodied in the legislation to give it even more strength to ensure children and young people in care enjoy good health, education, safety and adequate resources and opportunities to develop to their full potential."


Monday, 29 October 2007

FI - 301

29 October 2007 - Family Integrity #301 -- Bloggers make salient points

Dear Friends,

Here are some insightful comments from bloggers about the mum who was FOR Bradford's bill and has now become a victim of the bill.


Craig Smith
National Director
Family Integrity
PO Box 9064
Palmerston North
New Zealand
Ph: (06) 357-4399
Fax: (06) 357-4389

Our Home....Our Castle

if Section59 is repealed - or replaced...

From: http://nzconservative.blogspot.com/2007/10/it-has-started.html
New Zealand Conservative
Sunday, October 28, 2007
It has started
Front page of today's Sunday Star Times: School dobs mum to CYF for smacking son's hand. There were several interesting aspects to this case:

1. The mother says her family feels traumatised after a visit from CYF and later (for a separate incident), by three policemen. The policemen questioned (interrogated?) her child separately. I wonder if that was without a third party witness? She feels she has been labeled a "child abuser" for a simple smack on the hand.

2. The mother was in favour of the changes to s59. Obviously, she bought the line that this law change was around stopping violent abusers from getting off serious abuse by a legal loophole. It wasn't.

3. She did not want to be named because she 'fears losing her children'. There were a few notable cases in Sweden where parents said they had been threatened with losing their children if they made any aspect of the case public. It is likely that those that will speak out are going to be in the minority. We can expect this theme of blackmailing parents by threatening to remove their children for unfavorable public attention will continue here.

4. We can see that it will not take much for people to 'dob in' parents for a minor smack, and this in turn will create the climate of fear. She was dobbed in by a school teacher when the child said he got a smack, and a neighbour. Had the child been 'educated' that a smack is a bad thing, so he thought he could use it to gain attention, or as an excuse, not realizing the implications?

5. Ruth Dyson, Associate Social Development Minister believes the CYF intervention was not a result of the law change, but 'reflected greater community sensitivity to child abuse'. Firstly, note how a smack on the hand, that leaves no mark, is equated to child abuse by Dyson. Also, reflect that the law change encourages zealots to report such infractions.

Over time, there will be an increase in cases where the punishment of removing children from basically good families will far outweigh the "crime" of physical discipline. Will we learn of these cases however? Will parents be forced to remain silent for fear of never getting their children back?

From: http://halfdone.wordpress.com/2007/10/28/bradford-attacking-the-friends-of-section-59-repeal/
Bradford Attacking the Friends of Section 59 Repeal
Oct 28th, 2007 by scrubone

Here's a woman who one would presume to be in the small minority of parents who supported the smacking ban law. She was clearly fooled by Sue Bradford saying things like this:

"My experience over the last two years of campaigning for the repeal of s59 of the Crimes Act has revealed to me personally that too many New Zealanders see children as being their property."
[the bill is]..."a necessary step in a complex process of weaning our society away from a culture of violence and abuse of our children."
..."we view children as second class citizens not deserving of the same rights and protections as adults."
"I reject absolutely the idea that parents have a God-given right to beat the evil out of their kids."
(Pretending the opposition to the bill was just religious extremism was a very common tactic. )

They [The Auckland District Law Society] suggest that, rather than outright repeal, the degree and nature of acceptable violence against children can be calibrated - e.g. by saying that it is okay to use force against three to twelve-year-olds and that there should be no 'striking above the shoulder'. I believe all children have the right to live in violence-free homes.
"My Bill to repeal Section 59 aims to remove the defence of reasonable force from parents who badly beat their children, often with weapons that leave permanent physical injury."
"Those who perpetrate the abuse and successfully apply section 59 as their defence remain unaccountable to our justice system."
That's a selection of quotes from this post.

Clearly, this woman would never have thought of herself as "seeing children as her property", or propagating a "culture of violence" or viewing her kids as "second class citizens". She never thought that she would be treated the same was as parents who "who badly beat their children, often with weapons that leave permanent physical injury".

No, she was and remains a good parent. She never imagined she would be placed in the above categories.

But now she has. She's been reduced to a state of fear, afraid of the Government using it's power to remove her children.

She was not afraid because she supported Sue Bradford, believed her statements, but discovered too late the nature of propaganda - whipping up hatred against a non-existent threat, to disguise the real effect. By doing this Sue managed to get get many victims of the law to support it.

But even worse, while opponents saw the curtain of state infiltration into families dropping and took proper precautions, this poor woman kept doing what good parents do, never thinking that someday she might be the target of the bill who's objectives she supported.

Just one of the more disgusting end results of the lies of Sue Bradford - reducing the enemies of child abuse to living in fear.

FI - 300

29 October 2007 - Family Integrity #300 -- Letter from traumatised mum.

Dear Friends,

You've got to read this. It is the full letter from the Mum who was traumatised by CYFS and Police over smacking her child's hand. She was FOR Bradford's bill, and has now become a victim of it. She will, sadly, only be one of many, many more parents to be messed up by an increasingly interventionist state. The mum remains anonymous. I got this from "Big News" blog at http://big-news.blogspot.com/2007/10/family-traumatised-by-policy-and-cyfs.html.


Craig Smith
National Director
Family Integrity
PO Box 9064
Palmerston North
New Zealand
Ph: (06) 357-4399
Fax: (06) 357-4389

Our Home....Our Castle

if Section59 is repealed - or replaced...

Family traumatised by police and CYFS after mum lightly smacked her son on the hand

A Wellington mother says her family has been left traumatised by new anti-smacking laws, after her son's school reported her to Child, Youth and Family for smacking him on the hand. So she reported it to the Family First lobby who told the media What this story indicates is that anyone who gets reported to CYFS or police for light smacks on the hand will not only recieve unwanted CYFS or police attention, they`ll also get media attention as well.

This is what the woman told Family First. You read it here http://big-news.blogspot.com/2007/10/family-traumatised-by-policy-and-cyfs.html., first.

Dear Sir,

I would like to inform families of the potential repercussions of Sue Bradford's bill. I wish to do this by sharing with you our own family's traumatic experience, since this bill has been approved.

During recent school holidays, I arrived home around 5.30pm after a fun filled day with my children to notice a card left by Child Youth and Family, asking me to get in contact with them ASAP. There was no detail as to the reason. We received no official letter from CYF. After leaving six messages, over a period of four days, I was finally able to contact the Care and Protection officer.

The Care and Protection officer informed me that they had received a complaint from the school, and that under new policy they were obligated to follow it up. My child (hereinafter also referred to as X) had shown aggressive behavior towards another student. When questioned by the teacher as to why, X answered that they had been smacked that morning. The Care and Protection officer also explained that under new policy, teachers were required to report all smacking incidences directly to Child Youth and Family Services and that this was now just standard procedure.

The Care and Protection officer went on to ask me questions relating to X's behaviour, and whether they needed help in any way, eg medication, special needs etc. I replied, not that I was aware of - just a normal every day child having a bad day.

She also enquired about my family and when she was satisfied, she assured me that she would not take this any further and could I please ask the school to contact me directly if this sort of thing happened again.

Later when my husband and I questioned our child, X explained that they had thrown a ball and that it bounced and accidentally hit a class mate. X had woken up in a bad mood that particular day and was very reluctant and unhelpful at getting ready for school. I told X to hurry up - X was refusing and throwing a wobbly, so I ended up smacking X on the hand. I also gave X a bit of a push into the room to get my child moving (done in the heat of the moment). X responded by more yelling and giving me an evil look. It wasn't a good morning. (This sort of thing doesn't happen very often, but it does happen.)

I usually never let my children go to school angry with me, but that morning we were in a hurry. The teacher seemed to ask questions about X's behaviour and why X was behaving like this. The teacher seemed to ask leading questions like, how was it at home etc. X never told her what the issue was - only that they had been smacked that morning. Apparently the teacher said to X, I will see to that and then asked if there were any marks. X said no.

X is worried that they will be taken away, and it is really hard to get X to talk about it. X can also be a bit of a drama queen, and could have exaggerated to the teacher at the time (especially in X's frame of mind.) My husband did contact the school, to inquire why we weren't called earlier by the school and that this was just not good enough. He also communicated what the Care and Protection officer had said to us. The school responded that it was new procedure and were sympathetic, but offered us no apology.

This is the first incident of this kind we have had with the school. In the second incident (over 2 months later), I invited another family around for lunch one weekend. After lunch the fathers decided to take the children for a walk to the dairy and park. After they were gone about five minutes, two of my children came back and explained to me that they were goofing around, and that Dad had sent them home.

They continued to goof around outside on the trampoline. X got hurt in the rough and tumble, came inside in a huff. When asked what the matter was by our guest, X rudely replied, I don't want to talk to you. I kindly asked X to apologise and X walked outside. I followed and asked X to come back inside and apologise. X walked to the furthest side of the tramp, so that I could not reach X and refused to come back inside. My older child who was already on the tramp tried to wrestle X to the other side. There was a lot of yelling, laughing and screaming going on by everyone, as it had turned into a bit of a game. I tried to take control of X and pull the child off the tramp, while the child was shouting and resisting. I smacked X on the backside with the palm of my hand (X was lying on their stomach), pulled X towards me and asked X to control themselves. Finally X came inside and went to the bedroom. I told X to stay there until they apologised.

Within 20mins, there were three police officers at my door and they asked me to step outside. (had arrived with lights flashing). They had received a complaint from a neighbour about an incident concerning one of my children. They then asked to question X and at the same time questioned me separately about what had happened.

It dawned on me as I was relaying the events that I might be arrested, and asked the officer if that was indeed the case. She said possibly, but needed to speak with the other officer before she could tell me.

After questioning X, and getting the details of my guest, to my relief, they decided not to arrest me this time. The officer kindly informed me that since this bill that Sue Bradford had pushed through, that the police have to respond to all complaints concerning families with children. This was new policy and they have to cross their T's and dot their I's.

I wanted to get a good understanding of what she was saying, so I asked the officer, if this was the second visit here and the events were the same, except this time I didn't smack the backside but simply pulled the child off the tramp, would I still be arrested? She replied yes, because I still used physical force and that under the new law no parent is allowed to use any physical force, unless you are protecting your child. The police officers were very kind, but warned me of a possible arrest if this sort of thing happened again. And they left.

These events have traumatised my children, not to mention my husband and myself.

I understand the Police and Child Youth and Family Services were doing their jobs, and I commend them for it. But come on...this is going a bit far don't you think? My children have always had a healthy respect for the police, now sadly that has been altered. I am concerned for the welfare of this country if this sort of thing keeps happening to our families. Our children need security in our system, and shouldn't be fearful of being pulled away from their families.

We have since received a letter from a Foster Care agency contracted to CYF. They had been made aware of the police visiting us and have offered us their services. Their letter informed us that a social worker would call us in the near future. This was very nice of them, only I feel we would only be wasting their time. I am grateful it was this organisation, rather than CYF.

I really am grieved about where our country is heading. We as a family have been made only too aware, that if we tick anyone off for whatever reason, whether a neighbor, a shop keeper or teacher and they call the police, it is their word against ours. Now that we are in the system, it doesn't matter whether we are guilty or not. If the police officer doesn't like us for any reason, they have the power to separate our family. This is a horrible reality!

Again I would like to stress that we are an average NZ family. We have four children - sons and daughters, both teens and younger. We are all law abiding citizens, we don't drink, smoke or do drugs. We have always encouraged our children to respect authority and after this experience, have all been very traumatized.

An assault charge is no small matter. I have been involved in children's work for the last ten years, not to mention all the community work I have done with under privileged children over the years. (the real victims of child abuse.)

If I were to receive an "assault on a child" charge, I couldn't do these things, and I haven't even mentioned paid employment. This is an awful thought.

This new law seems to me, only to be creating insecurity for families that are genuinely trying their best to raise healthy, secure children, that are good law abiding citizens, and a lot of extra work for the organisations that are already over worked and under staffed.

We as parents need to be encouraged and supported by the government, not undermined and stripped of all authority.

Yours sincerely

FI - 299

29 October 2007 - Family Integrity #299 -- Family First - Let's Finish What We Started!


http://www.familyfirst.org.nz/files/images/stop%20the%20abuse.jpg We all want to deal with our appalling rate of child abuse in New Zealand.

The government's response was to criminalise good parents who corrected their child with a light smack

and the child abuse continues....

Then they spent millions on media advertisements telling us what we already knew - that violence was not ok

and the child abuse continues....

WHY? Because they fail to identify or deal with the factors which lead to a greater chance of child abuse as identified in every UNICEF and CYF report - namely, family breakdown, drug and alcohol abuse, low maternal age at birth, poverty, poor housing, and single parenthood.

See our 5-point Action Plan at www.stoptheabuse.org.nz

Help us make 'CHILD ABUSE' and 'FAMILY BREAKDOWN' an Election Issue in 2008

There is currently a petition which has over 200,000 signatures demanding that a Referendum be held on this issue.

If we can get the required 300,000 signatures, child abuse and family breakdown will become an election issue in 2008 and political parties will have to tell us how they are going to deal with our unacceptable rate of child abuse - solutions that are practical, achievable, and targeted at the real causes of child abuse. Then you can vote accordingly.

Please join us in November for

"The Great New Zealand Table Challenge"

Family First NZ is joining with a new group

Unity for Liberty http://www.unityforliberty.net.nz and other groups in inviting all concerned New Zealanders across the country to 'take up arms' - that means pens, tables and petition forms!

When: The Month of November (Saturdays, if you can do more days even better)

Where: The length and breadth of New Zealand

Why: To achieve the 300,000 signatures for the Citizens Initiated

How: By being available in your own communities for NZ'ers to sign the petition. Ring up a local shop and ask to run a table outside their business
on a Saturday or for a few days. Perhaps a sports field - mid-week touch - flower shows - Expos - wherever there's a crowd (the possibilities are endless!)


Start planning now. Grab family and friends - borrow a table, and print off a pile of petition forms http://www.unityforliberty.net.nz/petition.html and you're all set to go.

Thank you for taking action on this important matter.

http://www.familyfirst.org.nz/files/images/billy%20graham.jpg As Billy Graham said, "Our motto too often seems to be, 'Stay aloof. Don't get involved. Let somebody else stick his neck out.' In the face of all kinds of conditions screaming to be rectified, too many of us find ourselves afflicted with moral laryngitis."

Let's speak up - and demand that as a country, we tackle actual causes of child abuse with solutions that will work.

Kind regards
Bob McCoskrie

P.S. If everybody who received this email collected just 30 signatures on each petition we would reach our target. It's that easy!! So aim for 100 signatures to avoid any doubt!

FI - 298

29 October 2007 - Family Integrity #298 -- School dobs mum to CYF for hand smack


If you haven't already read the latest of how ordinary parents are being victiminsed by the re-write of Section 59, here is a wee excerpt plus link to the article. Below that is Swedish lawyer Ruby Harrold-Claesson's response.


Craig Smith
National Director
Family Integrity
PO Box 9064
Palmerston North
New Zealand
Ph: (06) 357-4399
Fax: (06) 357-4389

Our Home....Our Castle

if Section59 is repealed - or replaced...

-----Ursprungligt meddelande-----
Från: Barbara Smith [mailto:Barbara@hef.org.nz]
Skickat: den 28 oktober 2007 04:10
Till: Ruby Harrold-Claesson;
Ämne: School dobs mum to CYF for hand smack


School dobs mum to CYF for hand smack
By RUTH LAUGESEN - Sunday Star Times | Sunday, 28 October 2007

A Wellington mother says her family has been left traumatised by new anti-smacking laws, after her son's school reported her to Child, Youth and Family for smacking him on the hand.

"I don't want to feel like a child abuser, and I don't want to be labelled as a child abuser because I smacked my son," she said. "It's brought a lot of trauma to our family unit and unnecessary stress."

Read more here:

-----Original Message-----
From: Ruby Harrold-Claesson
Sent: Monday, October 29, 2007 5:03 AM
Subject: SV: School dobs mum to CYF for hand smack

Dear All,

I'm not surprised at all. This is just the beginning. In Sweden we have 7000 reports of child abuse per year and that figure jumped 14 percent in February. Cases like this one was exactly what I warned NZ for when I visited in July of last year - I had the verdicts to prove it - but the law-makers refused to listen.

To quote from Family Integrity: if Section59 is repealed - or replaced... YOU CAN KISS YOUR CHILDREN GOODBYE. http://www.storesonline.com/members/846699/uploaded/Brochure_-_Kiss_Children_Goodbye_7.pdf

Also, good quotation from the Stuff article:
"The mother said she had not previously been involved in Family First and had had some sympathy with Sue Bradford's anti-smacking bill, "not thinking that it would affect us on a personal level"." Let those who sympathised with Bradford feel the brunt of it. Who did she expect would be affected, other people's families? Isn't it typically psychopathic not to be able to empathize with others, but only to recognise one's own suffering?

By the way, was the govt. minister who was seen smacking his child ever prosecuted? I think he should have been prosecuted.

Have the NZ media picked up the article about the British govt. U-turn as yet? You know, one can always count on the British to have a common sense approach, which is totally lacking in Sweden and obviously also in NZ.

All the best to you and yours. Hope you all had a pleasant weekend.



Here are two excellent blogs regarding the Wellington Family left traumatised by police and cyfs

These blogs also include the letter from the mother to Family First.



Sunday, 28 October 2007



Mother angered by anti-smacking law
Oct 28, 2007 9:48 AM

A mother is speaking out about her family's fear of being pulled apart thanks to the anti-smacking laws.

The woman, who wants to remain anonymous, has written a letter about her experiences to lobby group Family First.

She claims she was approached by CYF after her child's school dobbed her in for smacking.

The woman says a teacher had been questioning the child about their home life, after an incident involving a classmate.

Family First Director Bob McCoskrie says it's the kind of thing every parent fears from the anti smacking law, but says it's not the only time the woman's felt the effects of anti-smacking law.

He says she had previously given the boy a smack to get the boy off the trampoline and police arrived in 20 minutes saying a complaint had been laid.

McCoskrie says the incident was then referred to a foster care agency who contacted the woman.

He says no one wants to come to CYF's attention, and it's also a worry the school didn't talk to the parents first.

McCoskrie says the law needs to be clearer so families who really need help can get it.



School dobs mum to CYF for hand smack
By RUTH LAUGESEN - Sunday Star Times | Sunday, 28 October 2007

A Wellington mother says her family has been left traumatised by new anti-smacking laws, after her son's school reported her to Child, Youth and Family for smacking him on the hand.

"I don't want to feel like a child abuser, and I don't want to be labelled as a child abuser because I smacked my son," she said. "It's brought a lot of trauma to our family unit and unnecessary stress."

The woman, who did not wish to be named because she says she fears losing her children, says another smacking several months later resulted in a visit from police.

In the first incident, she came home one day in the July school holidays to find a card left by Child, Youth and Family asking her to contact a care and protection officer.

The officer told her the agency had received a complaint from the school after her son had hit another child with a ball. When asked why, the boy told the teacher he had been smacked that morning.

The mother of four said she had smacked him on the hand after he had "thrown a wobbly" instead of getting ready for school. The smack had left no mark.

She said hers was "just an average Kiwi family". Both parents worked, did not smoke or drink or "have any addictions". They smacked rarely, preferring to use time out. She said the care and protection officer had decided not to take the matter any further.

The school was unrepentant when her husband questioned its handling of the matter.

In the second incident, in September, three police officers arrived at her house after she smacked her child outside, and a neighbour complained. The police questioned her and the child separately before deciding not to take the matter any further.

A friend who was at the house at the time, Gabrielle Allen, said the arrival of police was astonishing and intimidating.

"My friend is loud, there's a lot of volume. She's just excitable. I think she's a great mum, and she really loves her children. She's consistent but she's not over the top with discipline at all."

The mother then contacted Family First, a lobby group that vociferously opposed smacking law changes passed in June. The organisation put her in touch with the Sunday Star-Times.

The mother said she had not previously been involved in Family First and had had some sympathy with Sue Bradford's anti-smacking bill, "not thinking that it would affect us on a personal level".

Family First spokesman Bob McCroskrie said parents now feared the law, and Child, Youth and Family.

A spokeswoman for Associate Social Development Minister Ruth Dyson said the minister did not believe the CYFs intervention was a result of the June law change, but reflected greater community sensitivity to child abuse.

The Education Ministry said schools had not been given any fresh instructions about reporting smacking since the legislation came in.

Friday, 26 October 2007


Government u-turn as ministers tell parents they CAN smack their children


UK Report
25th October 2007

Smacking ok:

The government will not ban parents smacking their children

Ministers ruled out a complete ban on smacking today after a Government review found the majority of parents opposed such a move.

Children's Minister Kevin Brennan said the law would stay as it is after officials reviewed the way new rules were working.

Despite calls from many organisations for a ban, Mr Brennan said the evidence was that fewer parents now use smacking to discipline their children.

In a statement to MPs, he said: "Whilst many parents say they will not smack, a majority of parents say that smacking should not be banned outright.

"The Government will retain the law in its current form, in the absence of evidence it is not working satisfactorily."

Mr Brennan's announcement came after the Government conducted a review of the law, which changed in the 2004 Children's Act.

Section 58 of the Act removed the the defence of reasonable punishment from parents and adults acting "in loco parentis" who are charged with assault occasioning actual bodily harm, wounding or grievous bodily harm, or cruelty to a child.

At the time, ministers promised to review the law to assess whether it was working.

Officials surveyed parents, children and examined other evidence for the review, which took place this summer.....

But he continued: "Many organisations however support legislation to ban smacking.

"The police have discretion to deal with cases as they consider appropriate, taking into account factors including the evidence available, the public interest and the best interests of the child.

"The law is clear and section 58 has improved protection for children.

"But there appears to be a lack of awareness across different audiences about the scope and application of the law.

"In response, the Government will retain the law in its current form, in the absence of evidence it is not working satisfactorily.

"We will also do more to help with positive parenting."

Shadow children's minister Tim Loughton said: "This is a clear victory for common-sense.

"Clearly, if any adult is responsible for abuse and violence towards a child they need to face the full rigour of the law.

"But there is a world of difference between that and criminalising loving parents that use chastisement as they see fit in the interest of their child........

For full article and comments go to:

Comments (20)

Thursday, 25 October 2007



More Swedish Parents Smack Their Children

The number of Swedish parents admitting to hitting their children is growing, despite smacking being illegal here.

In a new study by Karlstad University 2.3% of parents say they physically punish their children, that’s more than double the figures from the last study from the year 2000.

Over 23% of parents say that they have shaken or pushed their children at some time over the past year. Staffan Janson, who was in charge of the study, says that he thinks that recent media coverage of parents needing to set boundaries for their kids has meant that some parents have gone too far.

FI - 297

24 October 2007 - Family Integrity #297 -- U4L, table challenge update

-----Original Message-----
From: Craig Hill [mailto:craighill@maxnet.co.nz]
Sent: Wednesday, October 24, 2007 6:28 PM
To: Craig
Subject: U4L, table challenge update

Hi All,

Very encouraged with the progress and the preparation thats happening around the country.

How Important are the TABLES? answer "VERY"

From the tables we manned to date, we are hearing many different stories and situations, and there has also been a few sad CYFS stories. If you hear any SAD CYFS stories please take details and forward these contacts to Family First.

The tables also remind the public, I have lost count of the number of people who have gone out of their way to encourage us to continue and are also encouraged that not all NZer's are being apathetic.

There is one special lady in Howick, Barbara from Precepts, we met her at one of our tables, unfortunately Saturday tables are very hard for her to support, from our last Howick table we had a number of the public respond saying that "I have already signed, it was Barbara from Precepts ." Well done Barbara.

I attended a meeting of about eight men in Howick to explain the purpose of "Unity for Liberty", two of the men had first hand contact with our tables, people do notice.

Recent collections over the past week include a very successful campaign in Hawkes Bay at the A & P show, they collected 1246 signatures in three days. If there is anyone in the Hawks Bay area who would like to assist in any further campaigns please email our coordinaters at hawkesbay@unityforliberty.net.nz

In South Auckland we had tables in Papakura and Howick, these tables collected 1495 signatures over 5 days .(including Targa Day in Papakura)

Some more Great New Zealand Table Challenge activities, if I have missed your initiative please e-mail me details, Thanks.

Starting from the: North Shore, one Church homegroup are planning a table for the last Two weeks of November

West Auckland, theres going to be a bit of action here, yet to be confirmed

Howick, there should be at least two tables over the four weeks

Mangere, again there is a bit of action here, final plans to be confirmed

Manurewa, in the process of gearing up a mid week table and Saturday doorknocking

Papakura, have one table running mid week when volunteers are available, also a great place for Saturday doorknocking

Pukekohe, gearing up a table for the main street for all 4 Saturdays

Christchurch, there should be five tables running here and looking for doorknocking teams, for further information please email chch@unityforliberty.net.nz

Also a table at the A&P Show.

Invercargill we have a recent registration who will be promoting the collection of signatures through several companies, good initiative.

If you'd like to help with one of the above groups, please email area contact or myself at craig@unityforliberty.net.nz

Here's the equation: 2500 people x 10 signatures per Saturday of November = 100,000 signatures.

Any queries please feel free to contact me
Craig Hill


"All that is necessary for evil to succeed is for good men to do nothing" (Edmund Burke 1729-1797)

FI - 296

24 October 2007 - Family Integrity #296 -- Ode to Section 59 Petition

The sky is blue, the sun is hot,
Two redheads wait in a shady spot,
In front of them a table stands,
A trusty, stable Bunnings brand.

To a pole and fence signs are taped,
The content of which make people gape,
'What's this about?' a person asks,
'A stupid law has just been passed.'

'Under this law, if you smack your child,
(They don't care if his behavior's wild),
Into your house civil servants will come,
Beating upon their proverbial drum.

'"You smacked your child,' is what they'll say,
We're sorry, we must take your child away,
Because, (and we're certain that you'll agree)
For your child, State care is a necessity."

And that's exactly what they'll do,
Your child will enter a State run zoo,
If you dare to use your parental right,
Your child will be in a miserable plight.

So help us today, and sign the petition,
Make an end to Sue Bradford's ambition,
If you don't do it now it could be too late,
To save our kids from a horrible fate.

by Lydia


25 October 2007

Mallard Supported Anti-Smacking Bill – Should Resign

Family First is calling on Labour MP Trevor Mallard to resign as a result of assaulting another MP.

“Not only has he set an atrocious example to our young people, but in May he voted for Sue Bradford’s bill to ban reasonable parental correction,” says Bob McCoskrie, National Director of Family First NZ.

“Mr Mallard has seen fit to criminalise good parents who use a light smack for the purpose of correction, yet has assaulted another MP. No reasonable force. Not for the purpose of correction. Simply a lack of control and discipline.”

“Mr Mallard can suggest that there were extenuating circumstances, but this same defence is not available to parents. Police discretion should not be available in an extreme case like this,” says Mr McCoskrie. “There was absolutely nothing reasonable in what he did.”

In the interests of maintaining the integrity and standard of political leadership, Mr Mallard should accept the standards imposed on all other New Zealand’s and resign.


For More Information and Media Interviews, contact Family First:
Bob McCoskrie JP - National Director
Tel. 09 261 2426 | Mob. 027 55 555 42

Wednesday, 24 October 2007


Toddlers allowed to run wild risk being violent adults, parents told
Daily Mail 20th October 2007

Curbing aggression in children in their pre-school years is the key to ensuring they do not grow into violent adults, parents are being warned. Toddlers do not learn aggression from other children, TV, video games or adults, says a leading child psychiatrist. Instead, most are naturally physically belligerent, claims Professor Richard Tremblay, from the University of Montreal.

He says children reach their peak of aggressive behaviour between 18 and 42 months. If parents fail to intervene at this stage, it could make the difference between a child growing up normally or turning into a violent adult. There is even evidence that uncontrolled aggression in the first few years is linked to criminal and drug-taking behaviour as adults, said Professor Tremblay. Professor Tremblay - who is due to present his research at the Royal Society in London today, warned: "Learning how not to be violent - which mostly takes place during the pre- school years - is dependent on both genetic and environmental factors." READ MORE HERE: http://www.familyfirst.org.nz/index.cfm/media_centre/recent_news/news/toddlers_allowed_to_run_wild_risk_being_violent_adults.html

Family First Comment : But didn't Bradford, Clark and Kiro tell us that it was smacking, smacking and smacking that led to violent kids??? Perhaps a 'reasonable' smack is just what is needed! Yet more proof that the ban on smacking was ideologically driven rather than based on solid evidence and research.


Smacking Law Affecting Good Families
Family First is starting to be contacted by families who are being affected by Sue Bradford's anti-smacking law. These cases are heartbreaking and are proving that the law is ineffective, having no effect on rates of child abuse or child abuse deaths, and is penalising good parents.

IF YOU HAVE BEEN AFFECTED BY THE NEW ANTI-SMACKING LAWS (or you know of other families who have), PLEASE CONTACT Family First AS SOON AS POSSIBLE bob@familyfirst.org.nz

Family First will be releasing to the media examples of good parents being targeted by CYF, schools and police. Please contact Family First in the strictest confidence.

Please also join us in the "Great NZ Table Challenge" as we seek to gain the remaining 90,000 signatures required for a National Referendum on Child Abuse and Parental Correction.

Family First NZ is joining with a new group Unity for Liberty and other groups in inviting all concerned New Zealanders across the country to 'take up arms' - that means pens, tables and petition forms!

When : The Month of November (Saturdays, if you can do more days even better)
Where : The length and breadth of New Zealand
Why : To achieve the 300,000 signatures for the Citizens Initiated Referendum (already 210,000 collected)
How : By being available in your own communities for NZ'ers to sign the petition. Ring up a local shop and ask to run a table outside their business on a Saturday or for a few days. Perhaps a sports field - mid-week touch - flower shows - Expos - wherever there's a crowd (the possibilities are endless!)

CLICK HERE FOR MORE DETAILS http://www.familyfirst.org.nz/index.cfm/sign_the_petitions.html


Tuesday, 23 October 2007



Summit to combat Maori child abuse
NZPA | Tuesday, 23 October 2007

ABUSE SUMMIT: Anglican minister Hone Kaa says Maori should take responsibility for child abuse in their community, and is organising a hui to address the problem.

The death of Maori children at the hands of their parents and caregivers is genocide, Anglican minister Hone Kaa says.

He yesterday announced a summit would be held in Auckland in November to tackle the issue of Maori child abuse.

He has invited Maori from the Waikato, Auckland and Northland to the summit.

The summit will be called Nga Mana Ririki, which means the Power of the Little Ones.

"Tamariki Maori are more likely to be abused and killed by their whanau than any other group in the country. It is time to stop this genocide."

Dr Kaa said there had been much public discussion, but very little action, over the reasons why Maori child abuse rates were so high.

Ministry for Social Development figures show Maori children are almost twice as likely than non-Maori children to be assessed as abused or neglected. In 2003, the rate per 1000 was 11.9 for Maori and 5.9 for non-Maori.

Dr Kaa said it was time for Maori to take responsibility for the issue and develop solutions that worked.

The hui would be by invitation. Participants would hear from a range of Maori experts, and then draw up a strategic plan.

"It's an ambitious project but I am absolutely confident in the ability of the Maori we are calling together. We converted from internecine warfare and cannibalism little more than a century ago, so I am sure we can stop abusing and killing our children."

Project manager Anton Blank pointed to the Smokefree campaign as an existing template for this type of project.

"Sustained communications and branding combined with community action and intervention services have resulted in a reduction of Maori smoking rates. We can do the same with Maori child abuse," Mr Blank said.

The summit will open with a memorial service on November 25, and will run until November 28. The service, which is open to everyone, will be held at the Holy Sepulchre Church on Auckland's Khyber Pass Rd.

Dr Kaa said politicians and decision makers would be invited to the last day of the summit, to review the plan and discuss how they might support Nga Mana Ririki.

Monday, 22 October 2007

FI - 295

21 October 2007 - Family Integrity #295 -- More bad news from violent-free Sweden

-----Original Message-----
From: Ruby Harrold-Claesson
Sent: Thursday, October 18, 2007 9:47 PM

I have some devastating news from Sweden, but I haven't had the time to write an article as yet. You see, violence among juveniles - even those belonging to the upper middle class - is at its peek. On October 6 inst. a father shot and killed a 15-yr old and seriously wounded a 16 yr old. The gang of mopedist (motor driven cycle) youngsters had terrorised the man's family for more than two years, their reports to the police were ignored etc. That night the youngsters entered the family's home, threatening then with sticks and other arms and the man acted in self-defence.

Same night October 6, a 16-yr old in Stockholm was clubbed and kicked to death by youngsters of the same age.

June 19, 2007, two 15 yr olds and a 16 yr old torture a handicapped man to death.

The list can be made much longer.

"We are now beginning to see the results of the general lack of standards that the social-democrats made their political agenda during the 1960's and 70's. It was about their views of the family, school and teaching and also about law and justice on the whole", wrote Justice minister Gun Hellsvik and School minister Beatrice ask in their article "Youngsters must be faced with a firm reaction", that was published in "Burning point", in the Swedish Daily on Sept. 5, 1993. The Govt. ministers (conservative) stipulated that Sweden needs a new family policy.

Here are two interesting articles:

Police could have prevented teen shooting'
By Paul O'Mahony

Governor calls for parental punishments
Phuket Gazette

All the best

Monday, 15 October 2007

FI 294

15 October 2007 - Family Integrity #294 -- U4L Table Challenge Press release

-----Original Message-----
From: Craig Hill [mailto:craighill@maxnet.co.nz]
Sent: Tuesday, October 09, 2007 2:34 PM
To: Craig Smith
Subject: U4L Press release

Press Release

Unity for Liberty calls for calm and action; not hysteria and hype in the lead-up to the next election.

The degree of family breakdown in New Zealand society is evident by the increasing number of brutal child abuse cases that are coming before the courts. There are many reasons for the current level of family dysfunction in New Zealand, but much of it flows from government policy established by the current political leaders. A rampant welfarism and laws that undermine parental authority have worked to dissolve the family unit. We now find ourselves in the ludicrous situation where the same political leaders and public servants, such as Cindy Kiro, are backing harsher sentences for child abuse.

Unity for Liberty sympathizes with those calling for harsher penalties but warns of the danger that now exists where under the current situation good parents are not protected by law. This will mean that the family unit will be further eroded by zealous government staff. It will require more than hype and hysteria to change this situation and turn our society from total disaster. We need laws that will protect and honour the roll of good parents in raising their children. We need to adopt policy that encourages and protects the family unit.

To effect change requires that clam and deliberate steps be made. The first step for New Zealanders is to petition for a citizens initiated referendum so they can have their say at the 2008 election.

To achieve this requires 300,000 signatures.

Unity for Liberty invites all concerned New Zealanders to be involved with 'The Great New Zealand Table Challenge' during the month of November. Download the petition now. Download from http://www.unityforliberty.net.nz Click it...Sign it...Send it.

Any queries please contact:
Craig Hill
m 021 746 113


10 October 2007

PM Should Call for End to Death Penalty of Unborn Child

Family First is calling on the Prime Minister to be consistent, and call for the end of the death penalty to both adults and the unborn child.

In joining Amnesty International's call today to end the death penalty worldwide, the Prime Minister said "The death penalty violates the right to life and is by definition and in practice, a cruel and degrading treatment. It is known to have been inflicted on the innocent. It's very nature means it cannot be reversed."

Family First agrees, and therefore calls on her government to immediately change the law which allows the death penalty being inflicted on the unborn child because of the abuse of the 'mental health' exemption clause in the existing legislation.

"It is ironic that during the smacking debate, the PM argued that children should enjoy the same protection as adults - yet has conveniently forgotten this principle in relation to the unborn child," says Mr McCoskrie, National Director of Family First NZ.

"It is also hypocritical of Amnesty International to call for the end of the death penalty despite its recent decision to support abortion as a human right. They have no credibility on this matter anymore."

"Family First awaits the Prime Minister's amendment to the current abortion laws which allow, on average, 18,000 unborn children to be aborted every year."


For More Information and Media Interviews, contact Family First:

Bob McCoskrie JP - National Director
Tel. 09 261 2426 | Mob. 027 55 555 42

Tuesday, 2 October 2007


There is a great post over at nzconservative.blogspot. Make sure you read the comments too:


Monday, 1 October 2007


Do you think that tougher penalties should be introduced for young offenders who commit serious crimes?

See story: http://www.stuff.co.nz/4220854a10.html

Yes (2968 votes, 95.4%)
No (144 votes, 4.6%)

Stuff polls are not scientific and reflect the opinions of only those internet users who have chosen to participate.

It is not tougher penalties that should be introduced for young offenders who commit serious crimes. We need to be training the parents on how to raise up their children so that they do not commit minor or serious crimes.

We do not need the State interferring more in families.
We need to give the parents the tools to train and correct their children as necessary.


"The reality is 15- and 16-year-olds don't suddenly become violent," Mr O'Connor said.

NZ First MP Ron Mark has drafted a bill that would lower the age of prosecution from 14 to 12, and introduce tougher penalties for young offenders who commit serious crimes.

We don't need to lower the age of prosecution from 14 to 12 we just need to give parents the OK to discipline and correct their children. This is years of PC gone wrong where NGOs have been telling parents not to use reasonable force to correct their children. We are seeing the results and these results will be multiplied now that Section 59 has been amended.


Police 'powerless to act' on child crims
By EMILY WATT - The Dominion Post | Monday, 1 October 2007

Children too young to be prosecuted have been implicated in more than 8500 crimes in one year, and police say they are often powerless to intervene.

Officers say there is little they can do in the cases, such as a 10- year-old who attacked classmates with a piece of timber, two 12-year-olds with 33 burglary charges, and a 13-year-old who attacked police with a baseball bat.

One Lower Hutt 13-year-old in social welfare care for sexual offences abused two-year-olds four more times while in care, with police unable to act.

Police usually rely on care and protection orders to intervene with troubled children through the Family Court, but officers say this can be difficult when many of them come from working two-parent families where Child, Youth and Family is unlikely to become involved.

Justice Ministry statistics show police apprehended 700 children aged under 10 and 7900 children aged 10 to 13 last year for crimes including violence, drugs and burglary. Property offences were the most common crimes committed..

Police say anecdotal evidence suggests young people are offending younger and more violently. By the time police are able to intervene, when the child turns 14, the behaviour is often entrenched.

Children under 14 can only be prosecuted for murder or manslaughter.

NZ First MP Ron Mark has drafted a bill that would lower the age of prosecution from 14 to 12, and introduce tougher penalties for young offenders who commit serious crimes.

Principal Youth Court Judge Andrew Becroft and Children's Commissioner Cindy Kiro have criticised the bill.

Police say they do not want to criminalise young people, but lowering the age of criminal responsibility would allow police to intervene and offer the help they need - before they became hardened criminals.

Police Association president Greg O'Connor said police also wanted the Youth Court empowered to better deal with these young people quickly and more effectively.

Lower Hutt Youth Aid Sergeant Steve O'Connor said most children who misbehaved were dealt with effectively by parents and schools. But the small group of serious or recidivist offenders were slipping through the cracks.

Some of the behaviours seen by young children were "quite frightening", including taking knives to school and assaulting other children.

Youth offending figures were "overwhelmingly under-reported", because many police simply took the children home without documenting the incident. But if young offenders were not dealt with, they would go on to further crime.

"The reality is 15- and 16-year-olds don't suddenly become violent," Mr O'Connor said.

Mr Mark said the Justice Ministry statistics were further proof the age of prosecution should be lowered. "In four years' time they will be the graduates of the failing youth justice system, and they will become the very adults that people are bleating about being in our jails."

Mr Mark's bill is being examined by a select committee.