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Maori Hearings Reach Tens Of Thousands / Pits Maori Authority Chair Against National Leader


Key Points:

Maori Hearings established after Simon Bridges refused to hear more from Maori on COVID19 / Maori Authority Chair reveals tens of thousands of voices are now being heard to improve the health, social services and community services response to COVID 19 / initial hearing finds deep gaps in under funding of community services / flaws in the DHB model and more

The Chair of the National Maori Authority, Matthew Tukaki, has said the online “Maori Hearings” into the response around COVID19 will continue after the success of Hearing One focussed on Mental Health and Suicide, Tamariki and Housing, Social Justice, Housing and Climate. Tukaki established the hearings after National Party Leader, Simon Bridges, refused to include more Maori in the hearings of the Parliaments Select Committee established with Bridges as Chair:

“I will tell you this – if anyone thought the voices of our whanau should not be heard they were wrong – and if National thinks the behaviour of Simon Bridges has been acceptable then they need to think again. The refusal to hear Maori voices in the response to COVID19 shows just how far back the National Party has gone when it comes to the Treaty” Tukaki said.

“As of today 28,210 people have been reached as a result of Hearing One, just over 900 submissions, emails, phone calls and messages have been received covering all aspects of social, health and economic policy – chief among the content has been the broad reaching support of the Maori response”. Tukaki said

The hearings have been established to provide more a voice to share the lessons learnt during the lockdown period, what could be improved on and done better as well as creative and innovative solutions to move the Te Ao Maori world forward.

“Initially I thought one hearing would be enough but that has now grown into three more. The first one highlighted gaps in community funding and support, the challenges facing whanau and tamariki, housing issues, the mental health and suicide response. I have gathered organisations and experts in policy areas to present as well as those with a lived experience. Because its live online we also take live comments and questions. The second session will focus on domestic and family violence, the primary health system and a change or evolution around Tikanga Maori / cultural change”. Tukaki said

“I expect that the numbers participating could go as high as 50,000 + which is a hell of lot more people that Mr Bridges and his lackies have reached. More importantly we will provide all Parliamentarians with a report across each of the key Kaupapa areas with a range of recommendations of where improvements can be made and innovation achieved to move us all forward together.” Tukaki said

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