12 Jul 2012

UNICEF urges Government to keep child services

10:31 am on 12 July 2012

UNICEF New Zealand is warning some children could end up worse off if the Government goes ahead with plans to redistribute funding to target vulnerable children.

In a briefing paper released on Thursday, Unicef says the Government's narrow focus on stopping child abuse fails to take into account underlying causes such as poverty.

UNICEF spokesperson Barbara Lambourn says the Government should be commended for being willing to discuss the plight of children through its Green Paper on Vulnerable Children, which attracted 6000 submissions.

But she says she's alarmed at the suggestion that in order to do better for so-called vulnerable children, those currently receiving important services could lose them.

Ms Lambourn says a cross-party agreement is needed on the standards children require for a decent life.

The Government's White Paper on Vulnerable Children, outlining its future policy direction, is due out next month.