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Abuse in Care inquiry: Archives NZ seeks feedback on care records

31 October 2023

To protect the rights of those with experience of State care and non-state care organisations (including faith-based) and help them understand their life stories, Te Rua Mahara o te Kâwanatanga Archives New Zealand (Te Rua Mahara) wants input into which types of records may be needed.

“The purpose of this mahi is to understand what care records are and where they are held so they can be protected in the short term and well managed in the future,” says Anahera Morehu, Poumanaaki Chief Archivist.

“These might be records about people’s time in care or about the places, or settings, where people were in care.”

A definition of care records is needed so organisations know what needs to be protected in the short term, and so Te Rua Mahara knows what rules need to be looked into.

Te Rua Mahara and the Crown Response to the Abuse in Care Inquiry (Crown Response Unit) have developed a draft scope and definition of care records for consultation.

We have looked at a range of sources and gone to people, groups and organisations with experience and understanding of State and non-State care to find out what records they believe are important for care-experienced people and their whânau, and for understanding the care experience in Aotearoa New Zealand.

Now we need to know what you think.

Find out more and give feedback by 18 November:

“Once we have looked at all of the feedback and made all the changes needed, we will publish the scope and definition on our website,” says Anahera Morehu.


The Abuse in Care Royal Commission of Inquiry (the Royal Commission) recommends the Crown urgently look at the rules around keeping care records and how they are managed.

The Royal Commission was set up in 2018 to look into what happened to tamariki, rangatahi and adults in State and faith-based care in Aotearoa between 1950-99.

The Royal Commission has listened to survivors, held public hearings, received written statements, engaged with communities, and conducted research and inquiries into different themes and care settings. It will make recommendations to the Governor-General at the end of March 2024 on how Aotearoa can better care for those in State and faith-based care.

Te Rua Mahara makes sure government records are created and managed well.

The Public Records Act 2005 specifies how government records should be created and managed.

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Te Tari Taiwhenua Department of Internal Affairs
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