27 Feb 2012

Call for traditional Pacific villages in NZ cities dismissed as fantasy

6:37 am on 27 February 2012

A call to recreate the traditional island village in cities as a solution to Pacific child abuse and neglect has been dismissed as a fantasy.

Some Pacific groups have proposed the idea of urban villages of extended families raising their children, to the government's Green Paper on Vulnerable Children.

But the chief executive of west Auckland's Waves anti-violence trust has told the national conference of the Pacifica women's council it is a wonderful fantasy.

Poto Williams says Pacific families are often spread widely over Auckland and other places, so mothers don't have relatives nearby to help in times of stress.

She says the focus of government help for vulnerable children should always be on the child, not on the family, as some Pacific groups want.