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Call To Maori Party To Support Civil Union Bill

Takatapui Call On Maori Party To Support Civil Union Bill

PRESS RELEASE: 07 December 2004

Takatapui call on Maori party to support Civil Union Bill

A hui of takatapui (Maori who are gay, lesbian, bisexual or transgendered) has called on Maori Party leader Tariana Turia to support the Civil Union Bill and challenged the party to form a takataapui caucus within its structure.

The three-day Hui Takatapui a Motu at Auckland University's Waipapa Marae attracted more than 100 takatapui wahine and takataapui tane from throughout Aotearoa, where issues related to the health and well-being of takatapui, including the Civil Union Bill, were discussed.

Te Herekiekie Herewini, a spokesperson for the hui, said a letter has been written to Tariana Turia urging her to show support for takatapui and their whanau by voting for the Bill.

Herewini (who is also Tumuwhakahaere/National Health Promotion Manager for the New Zealand AIDS Foundation) said the hui participants believed that Ms Turia's stance on the issue was one of vital importance to takatapui as members of their whanau.

"We also believe that a vote against the Bill serves to reinforce and condone the homophobia that exists within our community. Homophobia that has resulted in takatapui being rejected and isolated when they are most vulnerable" he said.

Herewini said the letter to Ms Turia also urged her to put in place measures that will lead to the establishment of a takatapui caucus within the Maori Party. The purpose of this caucus would be to provide advice to the Maori Party on issues related to the health and well-being of takatapui.


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