Electoral Commission Teams Spread The Word
Monday 11 February 2013
Te Kaitiaki Take Kōwhiri
Electoral Commission Teams Spread The Word
Electoral Commission staff will be out across New Zealand over the next few weeks spreading the word about this year’s Māori Electoral Option.
This year’s Māori Electoral Option starts on 25 March, and outreach teams will be working in communities throughout New Zealand to make sure that Māori have all the information they need to make their choice.
“If you are Māori and on the electoral roll, then this year you get to choose which type of electoral roll you want to vote on – the Māori roll or the General roll”, says Murray Wicks, National Manager of Enrolment Services.
“There hasn’t been a Māori Electoral Option since 2006”, says Mr Wicks, “so we want to make sure that Māori have access to all the information about the Option and what it means before making their decision when the Option period begins. It’s an important choice, and we want people to be confident to take part.”
People who indicated that they were of Māori descent when they enrolled will be sent a personalised Option pack in the mail in late March. It will include detailed information about the Option and the form needed to make their roll type choice.
Outreach teams, which include representatives from Māori organisations already active in local communities, begin their work from early February.
“This is a great opportunity for your marae, workplace or whanau to find out more about the upcoming Option,” says Mr Wicks. “To find the team working in your area, full information is available through our website at www.elections.org.nz, or by calling freephone 0800 36 76 56.”
For further information please contact Murray Wicks, National Manager Enrolment Services, on 04 801 0701 or Anastasia Turnbull, Manager Communications and Education Ph 027 474 3997.
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Rātahi 11 Hui-tanguru 2013
Te Kaitiaki Take Kōwhiri
KEI TE KAWE NGĀ RŌPŪ O TE KAITIAKI TAKE KŌWHIRI I TE RONGO MŌ TE KŌWHIRINGA PŌTI MĀORI
Ka puta whānui ngā kaimahi a Te Kaitiaki Take Kōwhiri i Aotearoa i roto i ngā wiki e tū mai ki te kawe i te kōrero mō te Kōwhiringa Pōti Māori.
Ka tīmata te Kōwhiringa Pōti Māori o tēnei tau ā te 25 o Poutū-te-rangi, ā, kei te mahi anō ngā rōpū takawaenga i roto i ngā hapori puta noa i Aotearoa kia mātua whakarite ai kei te whiwhi te iwi Māori i ngā mōhiohio katoa e hiahiatia ana hei whakarite i tā rātau kōwhiri.
"Mēnā he Māori koe, ā, kei runga koe i te rārangi pōti, ka whai wāhi koe i tēnei tau ki te whiriwhiri ki tēhea momo rārangi pōti koe – te rārangi Māori, Whānui rānei," hei tā Murray Wicks, Kaiwhakahaere ā-Motu o Ngā Ratonga Rēhita.
"Nō te tau 2006 te Kōwhiringa Pōti Māori o mua," hei tā Mr Wicks, "nō reira ka mātua whakarite mātau kia whai wāhi mai te Māori ki ngā mōhiohio katoa mō te Kōwhiringa me tōna pūtake i mua i tā rātau whakatau ina tīmata te wā Kōwhiringa. He kōwhiringa nui tēnei, ā, me angitu te whai wāhi a te iwi."
Hei te paunga o Poutū-te-rangi ka tukuna he mōkihi whaiaro mā te mēra ki te hunga i kī he uri Māori rātau i te rēhitanga mai. Kei roto ko ngā mōhiohio āmiki mō te Kōwhiringa me te puka e hiahiatia hei āwhina i a rātau ki te whiriwhiri i te momo rārangi mō rātau.
Hei te tīmatanga o Hui-tanguru tīmata ai ngā mahi a ngā rōpū takawenga, ā, ko ētahi ko ngā māngai o ngā rōpū Māori e mahi ana i roto i ngā hapori.
"He whai wāhitanga nui tēnei mō tō marae, mō tō wāhi mahi, mō tō whānau rānei ki te whai mōhio anō mō te Kōwhiringa," te kī a Mr Wicks. “Mō te kimi i te rōpū e mahi ana i tō rohe, e wātea ana ngā mōhiohio katoa i tā mātau pae tukutuku i www.elections.org.nz, mā te waea koreutu rānei ki 0800 36 76 56.”
Mō ētahi atu mōhiohio anō tēnā whakapā atu ki a Murray Wicks, Kaiwhakahaere ā-Motu o Ngā Ratonga Rēhita, i 04 801 0701, 027 249 4508 rānei, waea rānei ki Anastasia Turnbull, Kaiwhakahaere Whakawhitiwhiti me te Mātauranga i 027 474 3997.
What is the Māori Electoral Option?
A chance for New Zealand Māori and their descendants to choose to be on the Māori electoral roll or the General electoral roll when they vote in the next two General Elections.
When is the next Māori Electoral Option being held?
The Māori Electoral Option 2013 will take place over the four month period from 25 March to 24 July 2013.
How do people take part in the Māori Electoral Option 2013?
Personalised Māori Electoral Option packs will be sent to all electors who declared on their enrolment form that they were a New Zealand Māori or a descendant of a New Zealand Māori.
These packs will be sent out in the week starting 25 March, to the current mailing addresses registered on the electoral roll.
Packs include information about the Option, and a personalised form to use if the elector wishes to change rolls types.
What if someone doesn’t get a form?
There may be a number of reasons for this. They may not be on the roll at all, their address details may not be up to date, or they may not have declared themselves of Māori descent on their last enrolment form.
They will need to fill in an enrolment form. They can do this by:
Ø going online at www.elections.org.nz;
Ø freetexting their name and address to 3676 for an enrolment pack;
Ø calling 0800 36 76 56; or
Ø going to any PostShop.
The enrolment form has a place for them to declare that they are of Māori descent, and choose whether to be on the General roll or the Māori roll.
Do Māori have to go on the Māori Roll?
No. Māori can go on either the General or Māori electoral roll by signing the appropriate panel on the enrolment form.
How does this choice affect Māori voters in a General Election?
Those on the General electoral roll will vote for a candidate in a General electorate at the next General Election.
Those on the Māori electoral roll, you will vote for a candidate in a Māori electorate at the next General Election.
The type of electoral roll someone chooses makes no difference to who they can vote for with their Party Vote.
Every voter regardless of which electoral roll they are on or where they live in the country has the same list of political parties to choose from when using their party vote.
How does this choice affect Māori voters in local council or District Health Board elections?
The electoral roll type they choose may have an impact on their vote in a local authority or council election if their local authority has created Māori wards or constituencies under the Local Electoral Act 2001.
If someone chooses to go on the Māori Roll and their local authority decides to create a Māori ward or constituency, they would have to vote for the candidate in the Māori ward.
Can people make more than one change during the Māori Electoral Option period?
No. Once they have made their choice and returned their form, they will not be able to change roll types again until the following Māori Electoral Option.
Why can’t people change roll type at any other time?
Under electoral legislation, people already enrolled can only change the type of electoral roll they are on during a Māori Electoral Option period.
The frequency of the Māori Electoral Option period is set by Parliament. Currently, the Māori Electoral Option is held generally every five years, just after the Census of Population and Dwellings. The results of the Māori Electoral Option together with the Census data are used to determine the number of Māori and General electorates in Parliament and to revise electorate boundaries.
Who can take part?
Who is eligible to take part in the Māori Electoral Option?
Only New Zealand Māori. The Electoral Act defines Māori as “a person of the Māori race of New Zealand; and includes any descendant of such a person“. This includes Chatham Island Moriori.
Can Māori living overseas take part in the Māori Electoral Option?
Yes, as long as they are qualified to enrol to vote. To be qualified, they need to be either:
Ø a New Zealand citizen, 18 years of age or over and have visited New Zealand at some time in the past three years; or
Ø a New Zealand permanent resident who has visited New Zealand at some time in the past 12 months.
Are Pacific Island Polynesians allowed to go on a Māori roll?
No. Only New Zealand Māori or descendants of New Zealand Māori can be registered on the Māori roll. Under the Electoral Act, Cook Island Māori are not regarded as New Zealand Māori and must be registered on a General roll.
Is the Option open to whāngai?
Only if the whāngai or adopted child/children are New Zealand Māori or descendants of New Zealand Māori.
Why do people have to complete the Māori descent question on the enrolment form?
So that Enrolment Services can identify those people who are Māori or of Māori descent. This information is used to send Māori Electoral Option forms to those who declare themselves as being New Zealand Māori or descendants of New Zealand Māori.
This information is also provided to the Government Statistician, as the number of Māori on the General roll and the Māori roll is information that helps determine the number of Māori and General electorates.
How does the Māori Electoral Option affect the number of Māori electorates?
There are currently seven Māori electorates. Your choice will play a part in the number of Māori or General electorates in Parliament.
More Māori enrolled on the Māori roll could mean more Māori electorates. More Māori enrolled on the General roll could mean more General electorates and fewer Māori electorates.
How many Māori and General electorates will there be after the 2013 Māori Electoral Option?
It is not possible to predict exactly how many electorates there will be as a result of this process, as the last population census and Māori Electoral Option were in 2006. Population change over the last 7 years will be a vital part of the calculation. Although we know there has been some population redistribution because of the Christchurch earthquakes in 2010 and 2011, we will not know how much population change there has been and where people are living in New Zealand until after the 2013 Census.
Who decided that there should be a Māori and a General roll?
Four Māori electorates were established by the 1867 New Zealand Parliament to give Māori a direct say in Parliament. In 1975 the government introduced the Māori Electoral Option to be held alongside (or following) each census. This allowed electors of Māori descent to choose whether they enrolled in General or Māori electorates.
How did MMP change the Māori Electoral Option?
The Māori electorates were retained under the MMP voting system introduced in the 1990s. Since 1993 the number of Māori electorates has been calculated based on the results of the census and the Māori Electoral Option.
A special Option was run following the 1993 referendum that saw MMP introduced as New Zealand’s preferred electoral system. This Option saw more Māori registering on the Māori Roll and resulted in the number of Māori electorates rising from four, under the previous system, to five. Subsequent Māori Electoral Options have seen the number of Māori electorates increase to seven.
Under MMP there are two types of Members of Parliament (MPs):
Ø Electorate MPs - you vote for these based on where you live and the roll type you are on (General or Māori). Voters enrolled on the General roll, including Māori registered on the General roll, elect MPs representing General electorates. Voters enrolled on the Māori roll elect MPs representing Māori electorates.
Ø List or Party MPs - everyone enrolled votes for these MPs using their party vote. The type of roll you are on makes no difference to who you can vote for with your party vote.
Is this part of Census?
No. Census is run by Statistics New Zealand and takes place on Tuesday, 5 March 2013. Census is the official count of people in New Zealand and the places they live.
Go to www.census.govt.nz for more information.
Is this part of the Constitutional Advisory Panel?
The Constitutional Advisory Panel is an independent project
looking at New Zealand’s constitutional arrangements in