17 Jul 2014

Kaupapa Maori curbs recidivism - clinic

9:36 pm on 17 July 2014

The Mason Clinic says patients who take part in its kaupapa Maori progammes show low rates of reoffending.

Patients at the West Auckland clinic - the country's largest forensic mental health unit - have been referred from mental health services, prisons, and the courts. Some have been found not guilty by reason of insanity.

The clinic has 106 beds, and over half the patients are Maori.

It opened its Maori unit, Tane Whakapiripiri, in 2006.

Clinical director Dr Jeremy Skipworth says they are constantly re-evaluating Tane Whakapiripiri, and so far it has resulted in very low rates of recidivism amongst Maori patients.

He said the clinic has a number of kaupapa Maori programmes which aim to help patients gain a sense of identity, belonging and self-sufficiency.

Dr Skipworth says Te Reo classes, kapa haka and learning patients' pepeha are also included in programmes.

Te Manu Korihi has requested a copy of the data showing the programmes low re-offending rates.