30 Jun 2021

Oranga Tamariki staff stood down after video of children in headlock

11:23 am on 30 June 2021

Oranga Tamariki staff have been stood down after a video emerged of children being tackled and held in a headlock at secure care facilities.

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Photo: RNZ / Dom Thomas

Yesterday, Newsroom published a video showing young people tackled, restrained and held in a headlock by staff at a facility.

Newsroom is reporting the young people are in the care of Oranga Tamariki's care and protection units, which are secure facilities for those with particular protection needs who cannot live with family.

Children's Minister Kelvin Davis asked officials to get to the bottom of the "unacceptable" behaviour after the video emerged.

Davis said after watching the video he asked Oranga Tamariki to review the units to ensure the reported behaviour was not a system-wide problem.

Oranga Tamariki chief executive Sir Wira Gardiner told a select committee this morning police have been called in.

Sir Wira said social workers have also spoken to the child at the centre of the video to check they were okay.

He said the incident was completely unacceptable, and a review of all five of its facilities is underway.

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