Last Updated 12 Sep 2020

Ethics and Law in Cyps

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Te Whakakoha Rangatiratanga: Te Ture (516. 2) Social Work and Law Assignment Two Define the ethical and legal frameworks that fashion the practice of the organisation you have researched. Explain whether or not these frameworks link with takepu.

  • A systematic, detailed & reasoned assessment
  • Substantive exploration of issues and strengths
  • Some critical analysis
  • Principled theoretical analysis shown
  • Effective questioning
  • Effective listening skills

A reasonably balanced assessment

  • Main issues explored
  • Adequate content
  • Some points not adequately developed
  • Some good questions
  • Some good listening
  • Kaupapa not fully covered
  • Some points confused or not adequately developed
  • Overuse of quotes
  • Adequate but with flaws
  • Adequate communication

I endeavour to demonstrate the application of ethics within the context of social work, through the CYF vision statement and framework perspectives. Additionally I will tap into the different legal statutes and explain how legislation has been influenced to guide and tautoko the kaitiaki mahi that CYF undertake in this Bi-cultural nation. Statistics show that 35,042 children and young people were assisted by CYF as at 30th June 2010 by a team of around three thousand staff. With such large figures of tamariki; rangatahi; and whanau that they serve, there comes a great expectation and obligation for the organisation to have sound ethical policies, principles and frameworks.

I welcome you to join me in my journey of un-layering CYF and how ethics and legislation are fashioned within their organisation to enhance oranga and mauri of our future generation in Aotearoa. Tena koutou, tena koutou, tena koutou katoa. (Ministry of Social Development [MSD], 2010; Ministry of Social Development [MSD], n. d; Daley, 2012, B). CYF are a service line of the Ministry of Social Development that deals with three main services which are care and protection, youth justice and adoption of children and young people. CYF also deal with residences and currently have seven sites for children and youth that are at risk in the community to stay in, for the purpose of this essay I will focus on the Care and Protection and Youth Justice Services of CYF. (M. SD, n. ; Wetere, Personal communication September 6th 2012; Sitivi, Personal communication September 6th 2012) CYF intervene with care and protection services when a child or young person is believed to be un-safe in the day to day care of their guardians. The underpinning philosophy of CYF is to ensure that children are free from serious neglect; physical; sexual; emotional; and psychological abuse. When we look at the CYF vision statement The Ministry of Social Development New Zealand (n. d) states “Our vision is to keep our children and young people safe and thriving in strong families and communities. ” This statement captures the ethical framework CYF engage in through their child centered approach as kaitiaki. The clientele that they engage with range from the ages of zero to seventeen needing care and protection for their wellbeing.

In order for CYF kaimahi to be successful in applying the vision statement to real life situations, takepu are an active part of the process. (M. SD, n. d; Wetere, Personal communication September 6th 2012; Sitivi, Personal communication September 6th 2012) At a glance this ethical statement calls for ahurutanga, quality spaces which allow tamariki to feel safe engaging with CYF kaimahi; and in whanau environments where the child’s oranga is of the highest priority. Whakakoha rangatiratanga needs to be established with tamariki, whanau, and various community organisations to enable CYF kaimahi to effectively tautoko tamariki, whanau , iwi, hapu in achieving mauri ora.

In order for kaimahi to guide tamariki and whanau it is imperative rapport is established, when tamariki and whanau feel comfortable with kaimahi it enables them to develop whanaungatanga and become kaitiaki rather than a threat. To accomplish the best outcome for tamariki and whanau , kaimahi must work with tino rangatiratanga especially in regards to the best interest for tamariki. Using all these takepu principals will also assist in addressing taukumekume kaimahi experience when keeping tamariki and rangatahi oranga paramount.

In reflection of the vision statement in an ethical context, CYF have highlighted point two, responsibility to the wider community; and point three, responsibility to client from the Social workers Code of Ethics. The principal that a child’s welfare is paramount in the work that they do as kaitiaki is intertwined with obligations through legislation and is supported through the New Zealand Social Workers Code of Conduct . From a Maori perspective this view demonstrates tikanga; as the mana and nurturing of children are of great importance to Maori; their children are revered as taonga (treasures). (Aotearoa New Zealand Association of Social workers [ANZASW], 2008, P. 7-9; MSD, n. ; Mead, 2003, p. 51-52; Walker, 2004, p. 63; Ryan, 2008, p. 300; Social Workers Registration Board, 2009). 1816 There are four main areas in CYF Care and Protection and Youth Justice framework perspectives and polices that influence their services, being child centered; family led and culturally responsive; strengths and evidence based; and justice and accountability focused. All of these perspectives are supported by research and literature although I will focus on the perspective of their service being family led and culturally responsive. (M. SD, n. d; Wetere, Personal communication September 6th 2012; Sitivi, Personal communication September 6th 2012).

The family led and culturally responsive perspective acknowledges the need to work with whanau of all cultures, and to support them in their primary role as guardians of their children. The dynamic principle of whanau empowerment is at the core of this ethical framework and enhances service delivery toward greater family openness; it also gives an opportunity for kaimahi to develop whanaungatanga. The need to support families is recognized through this perspective, and also the need to include processes that involve the extended whanau in decision making for their children. Supporting the cultural component of a whanau and engaging with community networks is essential to this area of the practice framework. (M. SD, n. ; Wetere, Personal communication September 6th 2012; Sitivi, Personal communication September 6th 2012; Reihana, 2012; Families Commission, 2012, p. 27). The groundbreaking report Puao te ata tu (Day-Break), led by John Te Rangi-Aniwaaniwa addressed the Ministry of Social Welfare in 1988 and was imperative in initiating CYF engagement in a family-led and culturally responsive framework. It highlighted the social impacts of colonization and how that impacted on Maori. Also that the principles of Te Tiriti o Waitangi reinforce that Maori have tino rangatiratanga in the care and protection of what Maori consider to be taonga, in this case validating that whanau , hapu and iwi are collectively responsible for their tamariki.

Through this report there were thirteen recommendations made in regards to racism, poverty, cultural equity, recognition of tikanga, Maori participation in decision making, and government agencies working effectively. The Ministry of Social Development New Zealand (n. d) express “Every day as we work with families, every Family Group Conference we convene, gives effect to Puao te ata tu and its challenge to us to understanding the place of the child and young person within their family group, and their whanau, hapu and iwi”. CYF demonstrate tikanga principled frameworks by encouraging whanau participation in decision making throughout the duration of working with their tamariki; also by interacting with a perspective that children should be kept within their whanau , hapu , iwi systems. (Mead, 2003, p. 12-217; Walker, 2004, p. 63-65; MSD, n. d; Scoop Independent News, 2001; Higgins & Meredith, 2011; Rangihau, 1988; Families Commission, 2012; Daley, 2012, A). CYF as a governmental organisation interact with many different legislations, it would be fair to say that legislation principals shape the ethical frameworks in which they operate, and delivery of its services. CYF manages statutory care and protection services as defined by legislation, including the Children Young Persons and their Families Act 1989 (CYPF Act), the Adoption Act 1955 and the Care of Children Act 2004 to strengthen the focus on ensuring the best interests and welfare of the child.

However to keep in line with the service of Care and Protection and Youth Justice we will look at the the Care of Children Act 2004 and the Children Young Persons and Their Families Act 1989. M. S. D, n. d; Wetere, Personal communication September 6th 2012; Sitivi, Personal communication September 6th 2012; Families Commission, 2012, p. 29). The care of children Act 2004 replaced the guardianship act 1968 and works with similar principals to the CYPF act 1989. Its main objective is to keep the wellbeing of a child paramount in matters of guardianship highlighted in section four and five, also to have children’s voices herd as to how they feel that should look like in section six of the Act.

The Care of Children Act 2004 also ties in with the Domestic Violence Act 1995 and both pieces of legislation came into effect after an inquiry was made by Chief Justice Sir Ronald Davison into the tragic deaths of the Bristol children in 1994. The Care of Children Act 2004 and the CYPF Act 1989 walk hand in hand and are utilised by CYF kaimahi in matters of Care and protection, Youth Justice and interim and long term guardianship of tamariki and rangatahi. (Riddell, 2008; Parliamentary Council Office, 2004; Parliamentary Council Office, 1995; Bush & Robertson, 1994; Parliamentary Council Office, 1989; M. SD, n. d; Wetere, Personal communication September 6th 2012; Sitivi, Personal communication September 6th 2012). CYF as the New Zealand state care and protection system, operate under the authority and principles of the CYPF Act 1989.

This Act applies to children and youth up to the age of seventeen, with two major divisions which are care and protection and youth justice. The Act incorporates the Family Group Conference (FGC) as a means of making decisions about a child or young person that did not involve a Court Hearing. The Act set’s out procedures for the removal of abused children from caregivers, making the best interests of the child the first consideration. It also sets out procedures for dealing with youth offenders, making arrest and imprisonment of youth a last resort. Fundamental to the Act was the incorporation and inclusion of families throughout the process of making decisions in matters of care and protection of children and young people, and youth offenders. M. SD, n. ; Wetere, Personal communication September 6th 2012; Sitivi, Personal communication September 6th 2012; Parliamentary Council Office, 1989). Although most members of the public commonly recognise CYF as an organisation that has the power to uplift tamariki and rangatahi legislation, there are two imperative principles at the heart of it. Section six of the Act emphasises that the interests of the child or young person are paramount; and section five of the act encourages whanau participating in decision making; and whanau , iwi, hapu be empowered as kaitiaki for their children. The CYPF Act 1989 was considered to be world renown legislation at the time it was introduced and was highly influenced by the report and recommendations made in Puao te ata tu.

The CYPF Act is the response from MSD and CYF of their commitment to the expectations of Puao te ata tu. (MSD, n. d; Scoop Independent News, 2001; Higgins & Meredith, 2011; Rangihau, 1988; Families Commission, 2012; Daley, 2012, A; Wetere, Personal communication September 6th 2012; Sitivi, Personal communication September 6th 2012). In conclusion if we look closely at the ethical principles that guide CYF service delivery, they walk in piringatahi (companionship) with their legal obligations through legislation. It is evident that as kaitiaki the heart of their mahi is focused on the safety and oranga of tamariki and rangatahi, and that they encourage whanau play a key part in the decisions made for their children.

By being a family led and culturally responsive organisation they exhibit principals of tikanga; that families care for their tamariki; rangatahi; and solutions are to be sought within whanau , Iwi and Hapu in the first instance. Also the application of takepu through service delivery and recognition of CYF obligations to tangata whenua through Te Tiriti is apparent. It is easy for society to look from the outside in, and have a critical viewpoint of CYF and the kaimahi that strive to ensure that our children are safe, I was once one of those people too, but after undergoing this rangahau it has challenged me to look from another perspective.

In turn I challenge you the reader, imagine walking in a CFY kaitiaki shoes for one day, and you will come to a realization that we all, as citizens have ethical obligations to ensure the wellbeing of all our children and rangatahi of Aotearoa. “Ehara taku toa, he taki tahi, he toa taki tini”, my success should not be bestowed onto me alone, as it was not individual success but success of a collective, Mauri Ora (Ryan, 2008, p. 479; Families Commission, 2012, p. 29; Parliamentary Council Office, 1989; Maori C. L, 2012).


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