30 May 2011

Maori punishment research challenged by historian

3:07 pm on 30 May 2011

A historian is challenging research which says Maori began using physical punishment on their children only after Europeans arrived in New Zealand.

The research will form the basis of a pilot training course for Maori parents being rolled out around the country in conjunction with Plunket.

Te Kahui Mana Ririki director Anton Blank says Maori myths and legends as well as the accounts of early European missionaries, show pre-colonial Maori were kind, indulgent parents who did not hit their children.

Auckland University of Technology Maori history professor Paul Moon says there is no evidence to suggest Maori were any better or worse than Pakeha in the way they treated their children.