Waatea News Update

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

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Location: Auckland, New Zealand

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Maori Party wants trapping over poison

The Maori Party is calling for a moratorium on use of 1080 for poisoning possums.

The Prime Minister says there is no other way to rid some areas of the Australian native.

But the party's conservation spokesman Te Ururoa Flavell disagrees.

He says more research needs to be done on the effect of 1080 on waterways.

Mr Flavell says the government should run a large scale trapping programme using the unemployed.


A tobacco researcher says urgent action is needed to help Maori women of child bearing-age quit smoking.

Marewa Glover will give a submission today to the Maori Affairs Select Committee inquiry into smoking, which is sitting at Auckland's Alexandra Park Raceway.

Dr Glover, who has researched smoking among Maori for almost two decades, says Maori women make up a distinct group.

“Fiftyfive percent of women of childbearing age are smoking, and then they are pregnant and suddenly they have to deal with that addiction on top of all the other changes they’re going through and we haven’t got anything for them. Big holes in our delivery. Plenty of bombarding people with messages but not enough help at the other end,” Dr Glover says.

Smoking by mothers leads to a disproportionate number of Maori babies dying from Sudden Instant Death Syndrome.


Maori are twice as negative about their current economic circumstances as the rest of the population.

A first time nationwide survey of 100 people by the UMR research group found Maori had a negative 36 rating compared with the overall rating of negative 18.
The survey was conducted in the last week of February, with respondents questioned about the national economy, personal finances and whether it was a good time to buy things.

Executive director Tim Grafton says the Maori difference comes down to income, and as more Maori are lower income they feel twice as negative as the total population.

Maori were more optimistic than Americans, who in a similar survey had a rating of negative 49.


A member of the independent advisory panel on national standards says new standards for Maori medium education can work, but parents need to ensure they don't damage what kura are there for.

The government is asking parents and teachers to comment on the draft standards for Maori-medium education programmes.

Tony Trinnick from Auckland University's school of education is part of the team which has created the maths standard.

He says the team looked at criticism of the way standards were implemented in overseas countries, and has tried to use them to enhance the curriculum rather than confuse it.

“We saw the standard as a means to support these teachers in making sure that the mathematics knowledge was much more explicit. That was our primary motivation and if you make that much clearer to teachers, the aim would be to make them more effective teachers in mathematics,” Mr Trinnick says.

He says Maori parents don't want to see the curriculum narrowed to mathematics and literacy.


The first Maori president of the School Trustees Association says Maori should stand in this year's triennial board elections, even if the only skill they take to the table is their common sense.

Lorraine Kerr from Tuwharetoa and Ngati Awa says there has been a slight increase over the past two elections in the number of Maori on school boards.

She says many it's a rewarding job.

“Knowing that you have a say in your own kid’s future, something most of us have never had the opportunity to do so you know that you will have a say in their education, you know the decisions you make will be about all our tamariki, and hopefully for the better,” Ms Kerr says.

She says many Maori parents feel too shy or inexperienced to put themselves forward, but governance is about common sense and having a sense of what's best for one's children.


The organiser of a two-day Taranaki music expo says Maori artists will get a chance to learn from other musician and from visiting international promoters.

Sounds Aotearoa starts today leading up to WOMAD on Friday, and features Whirimako Black, Richard Nunns, Tama Waipara, Maisy Rika, Kora and others.

Emere Wano says Maori musicians wanted a forum to present their work and discuss the challenges of making a living from music.

“We're trying to instill that sense of pride and cultural and identity about what makes us different from the rest of the world. We’re bringing in other indigenous festival directors, buyers, programmers, so they can share their knowledge and expertise with Maori artists,” Ms Wano says.

There is a demand on the international festival circuit for both traditional and contemporary Maori acts.

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