Wainuiomata Youth AwardsYouth Affairs
Hon Deborah Morris tonight helped present the Wainuiomata Youth Awards. The Minister spoke about the positive things that Wainuiomata young people are getting up to and challenged the media to report the endeavours and success of young people.
"While the recent emphasis on youth suicide, truancy, suspensions, drugs, alcohol and crime are of concern - we mustn't get things out of context.
"Because of a few selected cases, Wainuiomata has managed to gain a lot of bad press. I think that's unfair. Young people and Wainuiomata deserve a better deal. My challenge to the media tonight is to report the success not only of the young people who have gained awards, but to continue to report the constructive role that most young people are playing in the Wainuiomata community.
"On most measurement scales, today's youth are actually better off than their parents were a quarter of a century ago. You are less likely to drink or smoke, less likely to drive drunk, less likely to die at an early age, and more likely to stay longer in education and gain a qualification.
"If we always focus on the negative, what are we saying about our expectations of youth?
"I'd like to thank Councillor Ray Wallace and Kirsty Sylvester for the hard work they have put in to the Wainuiomata Youth Forum and this award presentation tonight.
"I hope that you will all build on your success, whatever that may be, and go about ensuring that Wainuiomata is a place where young people are proud to live," said Deborah Morris