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When “wounded healers” wound others.

Posted by watchingcyfswatchnewzealand on April 7, 2007

As posted on CYFSWATCH NZ

When “wounded healers” wound others.
Thursday, 08.03.2007, 09:48am (GMT12)

Long, long overdue! While the colourful descriptions of some of CYFS minions may not be in the vernacular of the politically correct, it is refreshing to see those who have been bowed down by this odious agency being granted a forum to vent their frustrations.

As Francis “Fucking” Fulford observed recently, the traditional ruling classes have abdicated their responsibilities to the quasi-intellectuals of the middle class – in
New Zealand read “Wadestown and the

Courtenay Place

latte set”.

In Lynley Hood’s book ‘A City Possessed.’ a former social welfare department head observes how when women were allowed a more active role in the department, they “were bowled over by the rush of wounded healers pouring through the departments doors”. And herein lies the problem – the wounded healer. Persons who have had an awful life experience itching to put the world to rights and vicariously reliving their horrors through the dreadful experiences of others – the last people who should be involved in that sort of work.

Apart from the fact that working in such an environment prevents the wounded healer from healing; it is grossly unprofessional to allow such people access to prevent others from a full recovery.

I have no experience of CYFS as a parent, thank heavens. Not from what I experienced and observed of a CYFS community house for delinquents that was established across the road from where we lived in Tawa. This facility was established in a private residential area in a home once owned by the family trust of a local councillor.

It was purchased by the state at a time when there were 900 vacant state houses in nearby Porirua. A scandalous waste of taxpayers money and wanton devaluation of private citizens property values. It was established to remove street kids from

Courtenay Place

during the yuppification of the area by

Wellington
City’s “developer” Council. This facility was operated by the

Methodist
Church under contract to CYFS.

Although established by stealth, local opinion was, with very few exceptions, set against the facility. At a public meeting we were blatantly lied to when our concerns were trivialised by councillors and a plethora of social workers. They told us that the persons managing the facility had successfully done the same thing in
Australia and that the facility was for “care and protection” only. not “at risk youth” – a social worker’s euphemism for delinquent.

Fortunately we got agreement to put our concerns in writing and be given assurances in writing. Within 3 months of the facility opening its doors all the salient concerns had been realised – vandalism, graffiti, undesirables hanging about, loud obnoxious music, fire setting, stolen mail, burglary of a neighbour’s property by an “at risk” inmate awaiting a court appearance on five worse charges(!) and one inmate made pregnant by another! In the case of the fire setting this occurred within the first month of the facility opening when only one supervisor was present when two had been promised 24 hours a day!

Within a fortnight of commencing business our letterbox was vandalised and we saw one of the inmates do it. The police gave me the opportunity of charging the inmate but I declined as we did on other occasions. Instead I supervised the culprit in repairing the letterbox in a positive way. I was not thanked by the facility for taking what I would consider to have been a positive and compassionate approach. As I let them know in writing on one occasion I would never prosecute the inmates.

Poor little buggers had had a bad enough deal in life to end up in a place like that but if I could have sued our latte councillors or the Methodist church, that would have been another matter! As to the media shame on them for not giving your web address – shows which councillors and in which city they sup their lattes!

Our story has been written and fully documented, duplicated and placed in safe deposit. A run past a libel lawyer and the book is ready for publication. Make good reading if released during a
Wellington local body election campaign!

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