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Whānau Ora Takes “Bitter Sweet” High Court Victory Decision

Whānau Ora Commissioning Agency Chair Merepeka Raukawa-Tait has described the high court decision over the release of Māori data as a bitter sweet victory because “while we won the case, we won’t have time to use the data before the Auckland borders reopen next week.”

WOCA has been battling the MoH for months for access to the Māori vaccination data.

In the space of a month, the MoH have been legally stumped twice by the High Court and must now:

  1. Deliver all data of unvaccinated Māori within 72 hours to WOCA
  2. Disclose data of Māori awaiting 2nd vaccination within past 3 weeks to WOCA.

“Yes we have been successful, but the directive allows MoH to continue to procrastinate,” Raukawa-Tait said.

She said Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern must now take back control and not let unelected bureaucrats make important decisions, especially concerning Māori.

“Having to go to the high court twice in 4 weeks to win justice requires the Prime Minister and her Ministers to take back control of the Ministry of Health” Raukawa-Tait said.

“Dr Bloomfield must accept that should Māori death rates increase considerably over the next few months, we will hold him to account. We need to keep our whānau safe. This requires the data for us to target our teams and resources. We know what is at stake.”

“We should have had this data months ago and not have been subjected to the delaying tactics of the MoH.”

WOCA took legal action in October and won the first round – forcing the MoH to reconsider its initial decision.

But the MoH again declined and WOCA was again forced to take more legal action in November.

“All we have ever wanted is to give Māori whānau the same opportunities everyone else has,” Raukawa-Tait said.

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