Parliament

Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | Video | Questions Of the Day | Search

 

Dem Maaris sure can sing!

22 November 2006
Dem Maaris sure can sing!

Comments about Maori drug addiction this morning from Professor Doug Sellman, Director of the National Addiction Centre, unfortunately demonstrate how Maori are more likely to suffer from gross generalisations than other New Zealanders, Green Party Maori Affairs Spokesperson Metiria Turei says.

Professor Sellman has analysed Ministry of Health research into mental health disorders among more than 2500 Maori and concluded that Maori are twice as likely as non-Maori to become addicted to drugs. He speculated on National Radio this morning that a "range of cultural differences" including "Polynesian generosity, their ability at singing, their talent on the rugby field" could make Maori more prone to addictive problems.

"I don't doubt the finding that Maori are twice as likely to suffer from addiction than non-Maori, but attributing it to genetics and referring to the 'natural' of ability of Maori to sing and play sport is intellectually negligent and deeply offensive," Mrs Turei says.

"Addiction is an enormously complex issue for everyone who suffers from it. Social and economic factors as well as the impact of colonialism and racism must be seriously considered in analysing this data."

A 2002 Christchurch School of Medicine report on arrests and convictions for cannabis related offences shows that while Maori have a higher rate of arrest and conviction for these offences, simply being Maori increases the likelihood of being stopped and searched. A 1996 Ministry of Health report on drugs and public health says that while the rate of Maori mental illness is high, filters in the health system mean they are more likely to be identified and labelled as mentally ill than non-Maori.

"These examples show that there are always more complex social and structural forces at work when ethnicity is cited as a risk factor for anything.

"This morning's comments were simplistic and unfair. For such research to have beneficial impacts for Maori, the analysis of causality needs to be far more sophisticated," Mrs Turei says.

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell: On How America’s Middle East Allies Are Poisoning The Ground Joe Biden Will Inherit

As even the US mainstream media has been reporting, the prime motive for the murder of Iran’s top nuclear scientist Dr. Mohsen Fakhrizadeh (by Israeli or Saudi operatives, or both) has been to poison the situation that the next US president will inherit. At best, there was only an outside chance that the incoming Biden administration and the outgoing liberal regime of Iranian PM Hassan Rouhani could have revived the Iran anti-nuclear deal that Rouhani had negotiated in 2015 with Barack Obama. Deliberately though, America’s allies have now made it impossible for Biden to pursue that option... More>>

 

Pill Testing: Govt Moves On Drug Checking To Keep Young New Zealanders Safer This Summer

The Government will pass time limited legislation to give legal certainty to drug checking services, so they can carry out their work to keep New Zealanders safer this summer at festivals without fear of prosecution, Health Minister Andrew Little ... More>>

ALSO:

WorkSafe: 13 Parties Charged Over Whakaari/White Island Tragedy

WorkSafe New Zealand today filed charges against 13 parties in relation to the Whakaari/White Island eruption in December last year. “22 people have lost their lives in this tragic event. WorkSafe is tasked with investigating workplace incidents to determine ... More>>

ALSO:

Pay Gap: Progress On Pay Equity For DHB Staff

Today’s initial agreement between DHBs and the PSA on pay equity for clerical and administration staff is an important step toward better, fairer pay for this crucial and largely female workforce, Health Minister Andrew Little says. More>>

ALSO:


Media: Stuff Holds Itself Accountable For Wrongs To Māori

Stuff has today published the results of an investigation into itself, and issued a public apology, for the way the media organisation has portrayed Māori, the indigenous people of Aotearoa New Zealand, from its first editions to now. Tā Mātou Pono | More>>

ALSO:

New Zealand Government: To Declare A Climate Emergency

The Government will declare a climate emergency next week, Climate Change Minister James Shaw said today. “We are in the midst of a climate crisis that will impact on nearly every aspect of our lives and the type of planet our children will inherit ... More>>

ALSO:

Economy: Crown Accounts Reflect Govt’s Careful Economic Management

The better-than-expected Crown accounts released today show the Government’s careful management of the COVID-19 health crisis was the right approach to support the economy. As expected, the Crown accounts for the year to June 2020 show the operating balance ... More>>

ALSO:


 
 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • PARLIAMENT
  • POLITICS
  • REGIONAL
 
 

InfoPages News Channels