31 Jul 2013

Maori Wardens making positive impact in Victoria

7:05 am on 31 July 2013

Victorians are taking a keen interest in the work by local Maori Wardens in Melbourne, who are helping to reduce crime in the community.

The Maori Wardens Association was set up in July 2012 as a result of a concern by a kaumatua in western Melbourne over the increasing number of Maori and Pacific teenagers committing petty crimes.

James Hohepa Smith is a corrections officer there and answered the elder's call to help set up the association based in Melbourne's western suburbs.

Mr Smith, the chair of the Victoria Maori Wardens, says local fundraisers they've held have helped raised their profile.

He says people have told the wardens there's a need to have something similar for indigenous Australians and other ethnic groups.