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Maori Missing Out On Good Times

10 February 2006

Maori Missing Out On Good Times

New Zealand First is concerned that Maori are not benefiting from the current high employment levels in New Zealand, and is urging the Government to find ways to include them in the good times.

“Figures for the December quarter show that despite the continuation of the tight labour market, the unemployment level for Maori is 7.6 percent, compared to 2.5 percent for the European/Pakeha ethnic group,” said Maori Affairs spokesperson Pita Paraone.

“There is also an ongoing skills shortage that is reaching crisis proportions. You don’t need to be Einstein to figure out that training the unemployed to work in areas of high demand would be a good idea.

“I urge the Government to encourage the unemployed into the Modern Apprenticeship programme, and to implement more programmes designed to train Maori in the skills that employers are looking for.

“The figures show that the targeting needs to be a lot more refined before there is anything approaching equity in employment. Let’s not forget that employment brings social benefits as well as monetary ones, and a level playing field is in the interests of all New Zealanders,” said Mr Paraone.

ENDS


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