Waatea News Update

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

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Location: Auckland, New Zealand

Monday, August 23, 2010

More Maori needed in local government

The Race relations commissioner will use the Human Rights Commission’s diversity forum in Christchurch today to argue for more Maori representation in local government level,

Joris de Bres says it’s part of what’s needed to build a more tolerant and respectful society.

He says the annual forum is a chance to highlight pressing social issues.

“I will be talking about Maori youth unemployment for example, which has got even worse. We’ll be talking about Maori imprisonment. We’ll be talking about some of the issues of where are we going with the treaty and constitution. I think these issues move along and there’s got to be a space where we can talk about them,” Mr de Bres says.

The forum at the Christchurch Event Centre also includes sessions on bicultural environmental policy and the UN Declaration of Indigenous Rights.

LURID COLONIAL TALES COLOUR UP GOLF CLUB HISTORY

A Petone historian is challenging a story used by a new golf club to name one of its holes.

Warwick Johnston says Boulcott Farm Heritage Golf Club intends to put a plaque up at what it’s calling the Bugler Allen Hole, recounting the tale that in 1846 a 16 year old soldier, William Allan, raised the alarm that Maori were attacking the Boulcott farm, despite having his arm hacked off with a tomahawk.

He says the incident was clearly a colonial beat-up full of lurid exaggeration, starting with the fact Private Allan was a 21-year old drummer, not a 16-year-old bugler.

“If I can find as many inconsistencies and inaccuracies in this one small incident, what other inconsistencies and inaccuracies are there from this period. It worries me that consistently history books given to students, if New Zealand history books are give to students any more, that they arrive in from of them with images like that,” Mr Johnston says.

CLOAK WOVEN FOR SCHOOL FUNDRAISER

An Auckland weaver has created a korowai to help a school damaged by fire.

Sylvinia Subritzsky says she wanted to help after hearing about the devastation caused by young arsonists who torched Mangere East Primary School over Queens Birthday weekend.

She says she’s made over 40 korowai over the years, many gifted to schools to use as taonga for their kapahaka roopu, but this one is being raffled by the school.

The draw for the korowai will be held on Friday, and most of the 400 $20 tickets have sold already.

YOUTH UNEMPLOYMENT THREAT TO SOCIETY

Race relations commissioner Joris de Bres says continuing Maori youth unemployment is a threat to social cohesion.

Maori unemployment is running at more than 16 percent, but Maori youth unemployment is much higher that, particularly in areas like Northland.

Mr de Bres is concerned more than 40 percent of 15 to 19 year olds who have not gone into tertiary education can’t find them … and can become alienated.

“I just don’t think we can sustain that. I think it’s a genuine risk to social cohesion. These people will inevitably, these young people will feel marginalized,” Mr de Bres says.

Unemployment will be discussed at the Human Rights Commission’s diversity forum in Christchurch today, along with issues like Maori representation on local bodies and bicultural environmental policy.

TUHUA TRUST SEEKS MATAITAI AROUND MAYOR ISLAND

Bay of Plenty recreational fishers are backing moves by the Maori owners of Tuhua-Mayor Island to ban commercial fishing around the island.

Russ Hawkins, who operates the charter launch Fatboy out of Tauranga, says the proposed mataitai would complement an existing marine reserve to the north east of the island.

He says Bay of Plenty fishers have worked with iwi in the past to protect other marine areas and species, such as halving the bag limit for greenlip mussel beds near Tauranga-Mt Maunganui.

MAORI THEMED CLOTHES ADD EXCITEMENT TO PASIFIKA EVENT

The producer of Westfield Style Pasifika says fahionistas can expect to be inspired by some of the Maori-themed clothes entered for this year’s awards.

Stan Wolfgramm says 350 people are involved putting together an evening of fashion, music and dance at the Vector Arena on September 3.

Entries are coming in from Aotearoa, Australia and Oceania.

“We have a woman who has won some awards in the past, Kohai Grace. She’s put some entries in this year that are made of harakeke, some amazing garments there. We see a lot of tradition-inspired garments, either through the materials used or just the design,” Mr Wolfgramm says.

Performers to look out for are singer Mark Williams and a kapa haka from Manutuke School near Gisborne.

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