New Zealanders need to talk about more actively encouraging some parents to stop having children, the Social Development Minister says.

Discussing how the State could intervene to tackle child neglect and abuse, Anne Tolley told TV One it was "very difficult" to stop negligent parents having more children but the country needed to have the discussion.

She Child, Youth and Family (CYF) was in some cases taking custody of up to seven children from some parents.

"I certainly think we should be providing more family planning, more contraceptive advice to some of the families that we know who are - I mean, I know of cases that CYF have taken the sixth and seventh baby from," Mrs Tolley told the Q&A programme today.


After a string of CYF overhauls, the minister said she'd fully implement the recommendations of an expert panel looking into children in state care.

Mrs Tolley appointed the panel and it's final recommendations are expected in December.

An interim report has called for an overhaul to the way CYF is run.

Mrs Tolley told Q&A the panel might make strong recommendations along more aggressively pushing contraception, and these suggestions would have to be considered.

"I expect that they'll be saying, 'We should get much, much faster contraceptive advice in. We should be offering, you know, tubal ligations, all sorts of things and counselling those families'," she said.

A tubal ligation, commonly known as getting one's "tubes tied" is a permanent contraception or sterilisation option for women.

Meanwhile, the Minister ruled out any chance of private firms looking after neglected children.

"I don't think that we want to go anywhere near that, and I have tried to make that very clear. For anyone to step in and take a child out of their biological family, it can only be the State that does that."

Yesterday, Maori Party co-leader Marama Fox said viable solutions to fix "the horrifying reality for children in State care" must involve Maori communities, whanau, hapu, and iwi.

She said sixty per cent of children in State care were Maori

."...It's critical the State works with Maori communities to reduce the number of tamariki needing State care as well as doing a much better job of caring for them if they do end up in the system."

She said it was important programmes helped children stay "within the wider whanau rather than becoming orphans of the State".

Fellow Maori Party co-leader Te Ururoa Flavell sad the recent Productivity Commission report showed social services were not reaching vulnerable whanau, but approaches like Whanau Ora were making a positive difference.

"While this report talks about transformation change in the State care of tamariki we need to address the root of the problem which is the wellbeing of whanau," Mr Flavell said.

"Give a family the tools that they need to ensure they can support a child. We've seen the positive effects of a Whanau Ora approach and the importance of early intervention", he added.