Waatea News Update

News from Waatea 603 AM, Urban Maori radio, first with Maori news

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Location: Auckland, New Zealand

Sunday, February 07, 2010

Maori jobless stats too high

Thursday February 4

The Council of Trade Unions says Maori unemployment has reached shocking levels.

General unemployment is at a 10 year high with the number of Maori in the dole queues having doubled to 15.4 percent in the past year.

CTU president Helen Kelly says its hugely worrying that the rate of Maori unemployment is that of the general population at 7.3 percent.

“The youth unemployment figure is 26 percent and a lot will be Maori. This is our future. It’s a real worry if these kids can’t get a fair start in the job market,” Ms Kelly says.

She says the country is not out of the recession.


The Manukau Urban Maori Authority says the mayor Len Brown should intervene to ensure the tino rangitiratanga flag flies in the city on Waitangi Day.

The council's policy and activities committee voted earlier this week not to fly the flag.
But MUMA chief executive Willie Jackson says the decision is shameful.

“He should basically show some courage here and do the business for Maori and fly that flag,” Mr Jackson says

He says the flag issue is a real test for Mr Brown who wants to be mayor of the super city.


While attention this week is focused on the Bay of Islands, Hokianga hapu are preparing their own treaty commemoration.

Organiser Mita Harris says the event on February 12 will be the biggest since the original signing 170 years ago, when 64 chiefs added their tohu to the document.

A fleet of 12 waka will come over from Waitangi for the event, including the Hokianga-built Ngatokimatawhorua.

“I guess the hope is all of us in Ngapuhi and specially in the Hokianga will come to Mangungu,” Mr Harris says.

The Historic Places Trust is joining with E-Hoe Waka Education Trust, Motukiore Marae komiti and Nga Uri Whakatapu o Hokianga to stage the event.


Working with gangs and convicted rapists doesn't often lead to public praise... but last night 40 years of working with those rejected by society earned a Te Rarawa man a New Zealander of the Year Award.

Haami Tutu Chapman picked up the Local Heroes Award, which acknowledges people who make enormous contributions to their communities.

He says people often focus on the bad things going on in South Auckland but there are many good things happening.

“There’s some tendency to focus on all the bad stuff and try to get leverage from that but there are some incredible things happening in our communities and if we can get these stories out there, maybe that’s what my role is, to get the stories out about what our communities are ding. It’s a real honour to be able to do that,” Mr Chapman says.

He says focusing on what it means to be whanau is the key to overcoming difficult circumstances.


Trade unionist Matt McCarten is calling on the government to get serious about creating jobs for Maori.

The National Secretary of Unite says with Maori unemployment at a 10 year high and one in four rangatahi unemployed the government can't sit on the sidelines any longer.

He the Kainga Whenua programme to guarantee Kiwibank loans for Maori housing should be expanded to create jobs for Maori throughout the country.

“You should actually have a building programme which then you have with the local polytechs or wananga, you bring in apprentices with all the plumbing and the carpentry, the electricians and this sort of thing, take a holistic approach about how you create a community and meaningful work which requires intervention. That’s still not where this government's at,” Mr McCarten says.

This would move Maori away from primary industry, which are always the first jobs to go in a recession.


Maori leaders going to Waitangi can expect some hard questions from veteran Nga puhi activist Titewhai Harawira.

Mrs Harawira who has in the past been prominent at Te Tii marae powhiri says instead tomorrow she will be going to the Iwi Leadership Forum.

“For us in Ngapuhi here from that iwi leaders forum we don’t know what decisions they have made about water, about aforestation and about takutai moana, so those are they questions they are going to be asked,” she says.

Mrs Harawira says although the Crown is dealing with the Iwi Leaders Forum on the foreshore and seabed reforms none of them went on the hikoi in 2004.

She says it’s a kaupapa that belongs to the hapu not the forum but they have not been included.


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