Waatea News Update

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

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Location: Auckland, New Zealand

Monday, February 28, 2011

Maori struggling with quake welfare hoops

Te Tai Tonga MP Rahui Katene says Christchurch Maori who are having difficulties with welfare agencies may be better going to marae to seek help.

Mrs Katene says Tuahiwi, Rehua and Rapaki marae are proving support to people of all nationalities.

She says some Maori have reported being sent away from other centres because they don't have two forms of identification on them.

“What we are trying to is get Maori wardens and other Maori providers into the welfare centers so they can be talking to Maori as they come in and explain things to them so they are not having to wait in line for an hour and then find they need ID or whatever it is they need,” Mrs Katene says.


Meanwhile, Ngai Tuhoe has developed a crisis response for its people living in Christchurch.

Rangihau Te Moana from Te Kotahi a Tuhoe Trust says about 195 people registered with the various Tuhoe bodies are known to live in the city.

He's says the iwi has made some money and supplies available, which he is distributing to those he can find.

No one has called to report any of their relatives are among the missing, but he'd still like to make direct contact with all Tuhoe in Otautahi.


Pakaitore protest leader turned politician Tariana Turia says the occupation of Moutua Gardens bound Whanganui iwi together.

The iwi today marked the 16th anniversary of the start of the 79-day occupation with a concert on the riverside reserve, which has been returned to its ownership.

The Maori Party co-leader says the protest created bonds that will never be broken, especially being old and young people.

She says the occupation was a time of intense debate among the iwi.


The organiser of today's Pakaitore commemoration says when his family moved onto Moutua Gardens16 years ago, he thought they were going camping.

But Jay Rerekura, who's now 30, says he soon realised the 79-day occupation would be anything but a picnic.

“Back then in the early days of the occupation we got a lot of flak from the community here. Now we don’t have all that raru and that hate korero and it’s all about celebration, and we invite all of our own people and all other people to help celebrate with us,” he says.

During the day tamariki from Whanganui kohanga reo and kura came to Pakaitore to hear about the significance of the site, while the evening will be feature a concert by kapa haka groups and local bands.


Ngai Tahu chairman Mark Solomon says the iwi's move to Wigram today has gone exceptionally well.

The iwi obtained the air force base as part of its treaty settlement, and it will now be the centre for the Maori response to last week's quake, with Te Puni Kokiri, Maori wardens and whanau ora provider He Oranga Pounamu also taking space there.

Mr Solomon says the base is better suited for coordinating the relief effort than the tribe's lobster processing factory near the airport.

Goods flowing in from Maori round the country can be processed in the Wigram hangars, while other buildings are well suited for temporary offices.


A Maori psychiatrist says Maori methods may be particularly helpful for many of the people traumatised by the Christchurch earthquake.

Maori trauma counsellors have arrived in the city to help those suffering psychologically.

Rees Tapsell, the director of psychiatric services at Hauora Waikato, says the profession has developed techniques that draw on traditional Maori values.

“Whanau-tanga, whanaungatanga, awhitanga, to the extent they employ those things I imagine they will be successful not only for many Maor who are attempting to try to deal with this tragedy bit for non-Maori as well, because those are not just the needs of Maori, those are the needs of all of us,” Dr Tapsell says.

He says children and those with young families will be particularly affected by stress and anxiety, which is compounded by the continual aftershocks.


Auckland mayor Len Brown says the super city council hopes it can avoid court action over the funding for its independent Maori statutory board.

The board is preparing to ask the High Court to determine whether the council had the right to slush the budget drawn up for it by an independent advisor, as required by its legislation.

Mr Brown says the council is still considering its response.

“Ultimately you can take everything you like into the courts and I would hate to see an over amount of time spent on seeking court clarification for exactly what this structure means. Goodwill is the determiner in my view, parties finally agreeing, and that is what I am seeking in this process at the moment,” Mr Brown says.

He doesn't want to have to go back to government seeking clarification about the legislation setting up the super city.


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