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Bennett's baby ban 'a slippery slope'

Published: 6:39PM Thursday June 07, 2012 Source: ONE News

Taking children from serious child abusers is not getting much support from the National Party's coalition partners.

If a law change is required, the Government will need either the Maori Party or United Future to vote for it.

Associate Social Development Minister Tariana Turia says the proposal is a "slippery slope".

"Do we then make sure that every man who rapes is sterilised? Do we then chop fingers or hands off people who steal as in other countries? Where do we stop?" the Maori Party co-leader said.

And United Future leader Peter Dunne says removing someone's right to have children is too extreme.

"If you start to get to a position where kids are being forcibly removed from parents, it's got all of the trappings of the dictatorship states that we don't think we're part of," he said.

However Act leader John Banks can see an argument for state-sanctioned confiscation of children.

"Every child deserves to live in a loving home," Banks said. "No child deserves to be punished, abused and even killed, so we have to look at that."

A family involved in one of New Zealand's worst child abuse cases does not like the idea.

Neither Chris Kahui nor Macsyna King were ever convicted for the death of their twin boys but their sons' deaths have been singled out by Prime Minister John Key as a reason the courts should have the power to stop abusive parents from having children.

"If we are really serious about saying we want to see an elimination of the Kahui twins and those kinds of horrific beatings and murders of children, then in my view we have to step up and do more than we are currently doing," Key said.

Chris Kahui has a new wife and another child and ONE News put Bennett's proposal to his new family.

"Without forgiveness there can be no restitution and so for me we can't become too drastic," said Kahui's father-in-law Tom Ngapera.

Bennett yesterday ruled out forced sterilisation being part of the measures.