The Dim-Post

June 30, 2009

Another juxtaposition

Filed under: Politics — danylmc @ 3:16 pm

helen-lovejoy_largeThe Families Commission has a stated position in relation to the referendum, and as a Families Commissioner it makes sense for Christine Rankin to make sure that she does not contravene that line and speak out by campaigning in a way that would be inappropriate. Having said that, I would expect more from the Opposition. When National was in Opposition, we still cared about abused children and we did not spend our time playing political games. All those members care about is politics; they do not care about the abused kids of New Zealand.

John Key, Questions for Oral Answer. Hansard, 23rd June 2009

A team of social workers dedicated to child abuse prevention is included in jobs cuts confirmed this afternoon by the Social Development Ministry.

The Ministry – the Government’s largest with 9500 employees, including the Child, Youth and Family service – confirmed a total of 200 jobs will be cut from its ranks, Radio New Zealand reported.

Child, Youth and Family head Ray Smith said it was closing 12 administration service centres, and cutting a team of 18 child abuse education social workers, with a total of 80 jobs to go.

CYF workers face Social Development Ministry Axe. NZPA via Stuff. 30 June 2009.

Lady MacBeth:
Glamis thou art, and Cawdor, and shalt be
What thou art promis’d. Yet do I fear thy nature,
It is too full o’ th’ milk of human kindness
To catch the nearest way.

MacBeth, Act I, Scene V.


  1. Suffer the little children to come unto Key.
    Such is the Kingdom of National.

    Comment by George D — June 30, 2009 @ 6:17 pm

  2. 18 child abuse backroom educators get the boot..
    90 frontline social worker jobs created

    In what must be our longest recession since the 1930s in which net jobs have been shed every month since Feb 08, child abuse education becomes “nice to have”, but front line social workers becomes the priority.


    Comment by JC — June 30, 2009 @ 6:43 pm

  3. What is a backroom educator? Where is the front line? These words are constantly (and tediously) repeated, and never defined.

    For example, would somebody working in a classroom be ‘back office’ or ‘front line’? How about somebody doing research? If I visit a family am I on the front line, but if I then write up a report of my visit am in the back office?

    What if the office is on the ground floor, with a street entrance and a big window?

    Comment by sammy — June 30, 2009 @ 8:37 pm

  4. … and are front-line staff going to have to take on the work of the back-office staff when the back-office staff get sacked?

    Comment by kahikatea — June 30, 2009 @ 8:56 pm

  5. Agree with kahikitea. By sacking so called ‘back office’ staff (who do no less a valuable job) ‘front line staff’ such as social workers will have to do more administration work, leading to less frontline work and more back office work…..

    I’m getting quick sick of this bottom of the cliff attitude, so instead of educating people about what is healthy to eat, how to stop smoking etc, we are going to wait until people have been abused or are sick and treat them then?

    Comment by jumpingonabandwagon — June 30, 2009 @ 9:01 pm

  6. “we are going to wait until people have been abused or are sick and treat them then?”

    Yep. The immediate priority is fighting the recession.. not the battles of the future. Educating about obesity isn’t medicine.. it’s social policy and right now the priority is medicine.


    Comment by JC — June 30, 2009 @ 9:55 pm

  7. um, from the government’s point of view it may be “fighting the recession”, fighting the good fight what what. from the PoV of those losing their job it’s “being fed to the recession”.

    guess what happens to child abuse statistics when times are tough…

    Comment by nommopilot — June 30, 2009 @ 10:45 pm

  8. “guess what happens to child abuse statistics when times are tough…”

    Which is just what I referred to at (2). There may be an increase in child abuse that requires more front line work.
    Thats particularly a concern because we’ve had several years of a “baby boom” and 15 months of rising unemployment.. I’ll back more timely front line responses to problems over “education” here.


    Comment by JC — June 30, 2009 @ 11:00 pm

  9. And instead the firings will now load more back-line work onto people on the front line who already have enough to do.

    You can’t fire people and expect more to get done, that’s moronic given there’s no “shift to the frontlines” involved here, just the firing of support staff. And even if there was hiring of more “frontline” staff, they’d still end up having to compensate for the lack of backroom work in addition to their official duties.

    Comment by Ari — July 1, 2009 @ 9:23 am

  10. I read this yesterday and have since been wondering how to put Lady Macbeth in the context of the earlier quotes.

    The closest I’ve got it Bill English as Lady Macbeth, worrying that JK’s milky nice-guy approach won’t allow him to take ‘nearest way’ to cut spending. So Bill runs the show and JK (who already has what he was promis’d?) achieves the goal he wasn’t quite sure he’d set for himself. I guess in time Bill will release cutting jobs and government spending in a time of reduced public spending upsets the natural order of things and (at least in Polanski’s version) precipitates a bloody death spiral that ends with all of our protagonists dismembered, skewered or as a large red puddle under a tower.

    I may have over analysed this.

    Comment by david w — July 1, 2009 @ 11:29 am

  11. Wake-Up – Current NZ FAMILY Law and Social Policy and those who work within it – MSD, WINZ, CYFS, FAMILY Court – so called Child Support – ETC. – do more that damages FAMILY than FAMILIES do – The sooner the majority of them lose their jobs the sooner we have less Govt interference on the **Whole Natural Biological FAMILY – Check out Equal Parenting @ Ration Shed BLOG for some World-Wide Home truths – Onward – Jim

    Comment by jimbwarrior — July 1, 2009 @ 3:55 pm

  12. “A team of social workers dedicated to child abuse prevention is included in jobs cuts confirmed this afternoon by the Social Development Ministry.”

    And how do they reduce child abuse? Apparently by “educating the public”. I don’t know who these people are that attend “Child Abuse Education Classes”, but it kinda sounds pretty ineffective. Like the tv ads that extol the virtues of electronic stability control and side curtain air bags: nice if you can afford a new car, but irrelevant to the vast bulk of the populace.

    Comment by Clunking Fist — July 1, 2009 @ 9:07 pm

  13. […] I find this sort of comment (quoted from the dim post) disturbing. The Families Commission has a stated position in relation to […]

    Pingback by Goverment « Something should go here, maybe later. — July 1, 2009 @ 10:38 pm

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