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Statistics New Zealand indicated in the last census that there are approximately 1.1 million New Zealanders under the age of 18, of which 27 percent are Māori. [1] In comparing the national population with the population of tamariki Māori and rangatahi Māori in State care there is a significant imbalance. As at 30 June 2020, there were 6,041 tamariki and rangatahi in the care and custody of Oranga Tamariki, including both care and protection, and youth justice.[2] Of the 6,041 tamariki and rangatahi in care and custody, 59 percent are Māori and a further 10 percent identified themselves as Māori/Pacific.

Data provided by the agencies shows the following number of children in their care and custody.

Number of children in the care and custody of provider agencies and Oranga Tamariki as at 30 June 2020

Table One – number of children in the care and custody of provider agencies and Oranga Tamariki as at 30 June 2020.

Demographic data, provided from each of the four agencies, outlines the characteristics of the tamariki and rangatahi in the care system.

Given the very small number of tamariki and rangatahi in the care and custody of Dingwall Trust and Barnardos, demographic data is only shown for those in the care and custody of Oranga Tamariki and Open Home Foundation.

Oranga Tamariki Demographics

Demographics of children in Oranga Tamariki care.  Gender: female 47% and male 53%. Age: 0-5 years 30%, 6-9 years 23%, 10-13 years 23% and 14 years + 25%. Ethnicity: Māori 59%, Māori and Pacific 10%, Pacific 6%, Other 25%. Placement type: Non-whānau 35%, whānau 46%, return/remain home 13%, residential 6%

*Please note percentages do not add to 100 percent due to rounding.

Open Home Foundation Demographics

Demographics of children in Open Home Foundation care.  Gender: female 45% and male 55%. Age: 0-5 years 10%, 6-9 years 29%, 10-13 years 27% and 14 years + 34%. Ethnicity: NZ Māori 42%, NZ European 54%, Other 4%. Placement type: Whānau 35%, Foster parent 52%, Other 14%*Please note percentages do not add to 100 percent due to rounding.
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[1] NZ Stats https://www.stats.govt.nz/topics/tangata-maori-population
[2] The total number of children in the care and custody of Oranga Tamariki for care and protection reasons is 5,945 and those under youth justice care and custody is 96 as at 30 June 2020.


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