Racial discrimination: UN recommendations

UN

3 paragraphs of commendation and 33 expressing concern and recommendations in response to the New Zealand government’s action (or inaction). This is in the recently released Concluding Observations of the Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination (CERD) on the New Zealand government’s compliance with the International Convention on the Elimination of all Forms of Racial Discrimination. It is a telling scorecard which reflects the government’s lack of action to honour its commitments under Te Tiriti o Waitangi and the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples. Read Peace Movement Aotearoa’s useful summary for more details.

Vision and action for change

Action Station

“Our constitution and structures reflect our Treaty commitments, and rangatiratanga is guaranteed to Māori. Every person in Aotearoa New Zealand understands and respects Te Tiriti as our founding document, understands the harm done by colonisation in our country, and works to heal injustices and to see Te Tiriti honoured.”
This is the inspiring vision for a Treaty honouring Aotearoa expressed in Te Ira Tāngata: People’s Agenda for Aotearoa just released by the great people at ActionStation.

Te Ira Tāngata brings together a vision of hundreds of thousands of New Zealanders. It promotes change in the kāwanatanga (government) sphere, and responds to Māori-led work for constitutional transformation.

Alongside promoting a vision for Aotearoa in 2040, Te Ira Tāngata details the policies needed now to achieve this vision and provides scorecards of political parties commitments to these policies.  Check out the Treaty scorecard and look too at the other scorecards as the commitment to honouring Te Tiriti o Waitangi is reflected in many areas.

Te Ira Tāngata is an awesome tool for promoting short term action for long term change. Ka nui te mihi ki ngā ringa tōhau nui o ActionStation.

 

 

 

Conversations for the future

pav

ActionStation are currently providing a platform for people to come together for conversations about the future of Aotearoa through a project called “Kai & Kōrero” Groups of 6-10 people meet to share food and explore challenges and aspirations for Aotearoa. The conversation is focused around foundational values and the changes that might be experienced by 2040 if those values informed decision-making.

The contributions made through Kai and Kōrero will contribute towards Te Ira Tāngata: People’s Agenda. This is “kāwanatanga sphere” initiative (as it is coming from the Tangata Tiriti side of the Treaty relationship) has the potential to complement the work undertaken by Matike Mai Aotearoa – The Independent Working Group on Constitutional Transformation. If you haven’t read the report of Matike Mai Aotearoa, do so! Then sign up to host or attend Kai and Kōrero.

Honouring Te Tiriti in education

“As teachers, we are committed to honouring Te Tiriti o Waitangi and we understand this has implications in all of our practice.”
This statement is an excerpt from the recently published Education Council Code and Standards of Practice.  The Code and Standards are based on values of whakamana, manaakitanga, pono, whanaungatanga. They reflect a commitment from the Education Council to Treaty-honouring relationships and the expectation that all teachers will contribute to better understanding and relationships within their practice.
One starting point in meeting these standards is ensuring that teachers have a good grasp of the Treaty in the context of education. Groundwork: Facilitating Change has recently developed a new workshop to support teachers and school staff in understanding the Treaty and its implications for their work. The course has received great feedback from teachers. See Treaty and education for more details about the course.

Magical Māori Mystery Tour

Magical mystery

If you live in or are visiting Te Whanganui-a-Tara, take the time to see this exhibition, in the lightboxes on the site of Te Aro Pā (cnr of Taranaki St & Courtney Pl). Curated by Tina Makereti, and including writing by Debbie Broughton, Alice Te Punga Somerville, Rachel Buchanan, this project “explores a personal history of Wellington and critiques the way Māori histories are represented.” It is a powerful work.
It was designed by Johnson Witehira and Kemi Niko.

Responding to racist reporting with CPR

IMG_20170506_143455.jpgIt’s been a busy week in the midst of which I (like many of you I’m sure) found myself growling in my head and to friends about The Dom Post’s racist reporting in relation to road naming in Kāpiti. If you managed to miss this issue then read this to get up to speed.
Racism is a Pākehā problem and responding to racism is a Pākehā responsibility. Here are three actions I’m taking in response:
Complain: Most of the Pākehā media are signed up members of the Press Council, who in the preamble to their principles state:
“The Press Council endorses the principles and spirit of the Treaty of Waitangi and Bill of Rights Act, without sacrificing the imperative of publishing news and reports that are in the public interest.”
Obviously it’s not in spirit of the Treaty or in the public interest to report (on the front page of a major newspaper no-less) the views of two individuals on an issue they have absolutely no understanding of, views which are deeply offensive. This type of reporting is not seen as acceptable by the media in other areas. As Aaron Smale clearly explains, it’s the institutional racism within Pākehā media that means that the Dom Post thinks it is okay to run this story. They obviously haven’t worked out that they are not upholding the principles they are signed up to, so they need to be told this – by you!
The Press Council requires you to complain directly to the media source first and then to follow up with the Council if the response is inadequate. You have got a month to lay the first complaint. So if you haven’t acted yet, read Aaron Smale’s article for background (it includes the link to the original article), then have a read of the Press Council principles and use them as the basis of your complaint to the editor of the Dom Post.
Praise: When you support an action or approach that a group or organisation is taking, then let them know. This is a simple everyday action, and a particularly important one when the organisation is being publicly criticised for their stance. There are lots of ways to do this, both formally and informally. In the Kāpiti case, I’d suggest contacting Kāpiti Coast District Council via phone, email or their Facebook page. Make sure you ask them to record your support for the proposed names and to share your feedback with tangata whenua involved in this process (as they are the people being directly attacked by these racist statements).
Read (Māori media):  The racist reporting in mainstream Pākehā media isn’t always as overt as it was in this week’s article, however it is always there, both in what is reported and what isn’t. There is heaps of evidence to show that. If you are feeling over it, then a simple and pleasurable alternative is to read the non-racist media. Load the Māori TV app on your phone, buy Mana magazine, listen to iwi radio. Fill your mind and heart by reading the awesome articles on e-Tangata (and if you are in the position too also support their work in an on-going way).

Anytime you find yourself angrily growling at the racism of Pākehā media remember to apply CPR (Complain, Praise, Read) – vent your anger, express your support, and reward yourself with a cuppa and a healthy dose of Māori media.

Decolonising Solidarity

Do you have a solid understanding of or a strong commitment to Te Tiriti o Waitangi?
This workshop is an opportunity to deepen and challenge our thinking about solidarity work by learning from those involved in struggles for indigenous self-determination in Australia and locally.

Hear from Clare Land (a non-Aboriginal person living on Kulin nation land) the author of ‘Decolonizing Solidarity: Dilemmas and Directions for Supporters of Indigenous Struggles’.  Long-time activist, Sina Brown-Davis (Nō Ngāti Whātua ki Kaipara, Tonga and Samoa), Kassie Hartendorp (Ngāti Raukawa) and Jen Margaret (Pākehā).

Saturday 13 May, 1-5pm, Thistle Hall, Te Whanganui a Tara

More information and registration is available here.
This workshop is hosted by Te Tiriti Collective.