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Funding Boost For Office Of Ethnic Affairs

12 May

The Office of Ethnic Affairs is to receive a funding boost of $700,000, Ethnic Affairs Minister, George Hawkins, announced today.

The increase of $350,000 over each of the next two years represents a rise of almost 50 per cent on the Office’s funding of $696,000 in the current year.

“The increase will allow the Office to employ additional staff in Auckland and Wellington, initiate a staff position in Christchurch,” Mr Hawkins said.

“The result will be better communication, a better informed government and a stronger base for New Zealand’s ethnic communities,” he said.

Established by the present government in 2001 and based in the Department of Internal Affairs, the Office of Ethnic Affairs provides information to the more than 50 ethnic groups that constitute around 10 per cent of New Zealand’s population.

While Maori and Pacific Island people usually work through Te Puni Kokiri and the Ministry of Pacific Island Affairs, the Office of Ethnic Affairs works with migrants and refugees, as well as long-term settlers and their descendants, alongside community and voluntary organisations and Government and local authorities.

The Office provides a point of contact for ethnic communities with the New Zealand Government and information on matters affecting ethnic communities. It also provides policy advice on issues relating to ethnic groups and helps identify implications for ethnic communities in the policy advice and service delivery of government agencies.

Currently, the Office is supporting the New Zealand Chinese Association and its branches with an apology and reconciliation process arising from discrimination against early Chinese settlers and their descendants during the late 19th Century and early 20th Century. ENDS


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