Maori spiritualism and cultural beliefs are another matter however.
A fine example of this can be seen in a report just released by MSD.
It canvasses child misconduct and the ways in which the state deals with the problem.
Te Hohounga: Mai I Te Tirohanga Māori – The Process of Reconciliation: Towards a Māori View - The Delivery of Conduct Problem Services to Māori (Te Hohounga). The report was commissioned by the Ministry of Social Development in 2009. The author, Lisa Cherrington, (Ngati Hine, Ngapuhi), is a Senior Clinical Psychologist, School of Psychology, Massey University.
Te Hohounga contributes toward a Māori view of conduct problems and to provide advice on how Māori tamariki, taiohi and whānau experiencing conduct problems receive the most effective and culturally enhancing interventions possible and on improving behavioural services for Māori....
The starting point to Te Hohounga is the importance of indigenous knowledge and identity, and how this is reflected in mythology stories to understand, and respond to, conduct problems:“Kōrero pūrākau (mythology stories) highlight the impact of separation. After Ranginui and Papatuanuku were separated, their children all had different reactions. Kōrero pūrākau show us how our atua coped, adapted and dealt with change, separation and loss. Aspects of tikanga came about from the actions of the atua who were reacting to the changes. In addition, the pūrākau show the capacity for both positive and negative actions. When considering the behaviour of each of the children, the pūrākau reflect a strong, strengths-based focus. This is relevant to viewing conduct problems within a Te Ao Māori perspective”.
IF a different approach were successful, and IF correcting child misconduct is to continue be the job of the state, then so be it.
BUT research into the effectiveness of the Maori world-view approach conducted by Professor David Fergusson warned:
These findings do pose a challenge to current policies aimed at reducing the over-representation of Māori children in rates of child maltreatment, which emphasise “identity interventions” that are not evidence-based and are largely ideologically driven. Even though such policies are no doubt well intentioned and observe statutory requirements unique to the New Zealand context, following the view expounded by UNICEF (2003, 2007), they must be exposed to ongoing critical scrutiny and empirical evaluation.