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Budget 2024 - Hāpai Te Hauora Lays Out Its "Essentials (Wish) List" To The Government

On May 30, 2024, the Government will announce its first full budget. In anticipation each year, Hāpai Te Hauora, as the largest Māori Public Health organisation in Aotearoa, prepares a wish list to highlight to the government critical investment areas urgently needed across communities in Aotearoa.

This year, given the fiscal constraints in a post pandemic setting, we have assembled an "Essentials (Wish) List" focussed on those most in need this year.

The key areas of investment must address the social determinants that significantly impact the health and wellbeing of whānau. These fundamental needs are holistic, covering employment, education, housing, culture, and overall wellbeing. Together, these areas have the greatest positive impact on health and the reduction of illness and mortality.

Jasmine Graham, Māori Public Health Lead for Hāpai states "This government must directs its investment towards underserved high-needs communities".

Ms. Graham continues "in the two years since the Pae Ora (Healthy Futures) Bill was put into law to address the policies and systems that had long neglected the most underserved whānau, we were starting to see resources and investments shifting through Te Aka Whai Ora.

With the disestablishment of the Māori Health Authority, we implore the government to demonstrate its commitment to whānau in the greatest need-particularly Māori, who are disproportionately affected by nearly everydisease. We have heard they are serious about Māori health outcomes, and we expect to see this reflected in this budget".

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Hāpai Te Hauora acknowledges the important roles of the Iwi Māori Partnership Boards and the Hauora Māori Advisory Committee that remain, and we expect them to hold the system accountable, ensuring that ineffective practices from the past are not repeated.

Graham summarises with, "We continue to advocate for decisions that align with Te Pae Tawhiti, the horizon of wellbeing we all collectively aspire to. Without significant and targeted responses to address the holistic needs of Māori, achieving a prosperous future for all will be impossible, representing a failure of this current government to protect and serve all peoples of Aotearoa New Zealand."

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