FASD Advisory Rōpū at Parliament

FASD-CAN Board members including Chair Dr Leigh Henderson and (left to right above) Huriana McRoberts, Diana Kawana and Tania Henderson (Ōtautahi Navigator for FASD-CAN) attended the large hui in parliament about FASD. Our founding chair Claire Gyde also attended.

The hui was the outcome of a claim brought under the Waitangi tribunal by Raawiri (David) Ratū to address the effects of alcohol exposure in the womb. It was gratifying to see that many senior and influential people were in attendance – from the Ministries for Health, Disabled People, justice, corrections, education, Oranga Tamariki and police, human rights and other areas where FASD has an impact.

The Associate Minister for Health, Willow-Jean Price, announced the formation of the Māori FASD Coalition to advise government on providing support for Māori living with FASD in Aotearoa. FASD-CAN welcomes this step, which recognises the huge impact to NZ society of exposure to alcohol in pregnancy which disproportionately affects Māori.

It is estimated that 60,000 people under the age of 18 in New Zealand have FASD, with a further approximately 3,000 born every year. All of those need disability support, early interventions, understanding and informed responses to their lifelong disability.

Click here to read the Stuff article.