- Date published:
8:50 am, June 9th, 2015 - 19 comments
Categories: class war, john key, making shit up, national, radio, you couldn't make this shit up - Tags: anne tolley, relationships aotearoa
I blogged about this previously. Relationships Aotearoa will close its doors today and the actions the Government has taken to address related issues are looking increasingly inept.
The Ministry of Social Development has met with five other providers; Barnardos, Presbyterian Support, Stand Children’s Service, Lifeline and one other unnamed group.
Relationships Aotearoa strategic adviser Cary Hayward said the only organisation still at the negotiating table was Stand Children’s Service.
He said the Ministry had given assurance that five providers were lined up but that was not the case.
“It’s clear that they weren’t in a position to be able to take on Relationships Aotearoa’s work, but we are fortunate to be able to be working with Stand Children’s Service to transition a proportion of our clients and our staff.”
The ministry said it talked to five agencies and Stand Children’s Services agreed to be the main provider. It would take on about 70 clinical staff, of which about 25 percent have transferred.
Deputy chief executive of community investment Murray Edridge said all five agencies were still working with the ministry.
The Government had previously suggested that plans were in place to cover clients if and when Relationships Aotearoa closed its doors. In fact on May 26 officials made the announcement about the five organisations being prepared to take over.
Last night MSD branded Radio New Zealand’s claim as mischievous nonsense and then stated that three of the five entities had agreed to take primary rules and two others would take “supporting roles”. Time will tell but I suspect that the next few weeks is going to show the transition process to be a colossal f*&k up.
MSD also tried to blame Relationships Aotearoa for current problems, and claimed that it was being obstructive to the hand over, particularly in relation to the exchange of clients’ personal information. Relationships Aotearoa is justifiably resistant to handing over personal information and client’s files. Some of the organisation’s clients have complex needs and have through long term contact built up trust in their counsellor. The easiest way to destroy this faith is for a stranger to suddenly contact one of these persons obviously having at least some of that client’s information which may be incredibly sensitive.
MSD suggested that Privacy Commissioner John Edwards supported its view that there were no significant privacy issues. He appeared on Morning Report this morning to clarify that this was not the case. Earlier commentary suggested that he was annoyed that MSD had misrepresented his view.
In Edwards’ view if agreement to hand over information between the provider and client was reached there is no problem but otherwise the situation is fraught. He also agreed with the view that the hand over was being rushed. MSD’s view that as funder it has full rights to clients’ information is clearly not correct.
Relationships Aotearoa has had its overall funding slashed continuously since 2008. It has managed a steep decline of funding reasonably well and has significantly reduced staff numbers. With a bit of help from the Government it could have continued to have reduced expenses until it could live within Government’s expectations. That the Government was not prepared to do this shows its complete indifference to those amongst us in need.
And if you recent examples of the Government’s priorities?
But it would not prepay Relationships Aotearoa the sum of $1 million and resign existing contracts to stop it from falling over.
National Ltd TM. Preferring the rich to the poor and needy for ever.