Wednesday, January 04, 2017

That was that... Maori unemployment still high, sheds aren't homes, and Rakiura win in customary rights case

I've gone quiet over the last few months, a few desultory postings, some updates. Nothing special.

So what's new I hear you laugh...

As a reminder, this blog started as a digital repository of news releases and data sources related to the 'Maori economy'. Despite wider and deeper data on things economic (and what's not economic, right), Maori seemed curiously absent. No, not absent but kinda glossed over. Both there and not there. So I've tried to collate whatever data appears, and track some figures over time e.g., Household Labour Force Survey and the so-called Maori economy.

This Maori economy, up-dated in 2013 to the tune of $42.6 billion, intrigues me. From its conception (by BERL) it has been used as political leverage for successive Maori Ministers.

But you still see an awful lot of tin sheds in Aotearoa with Maori tenants...

http://www.stuff.co.nz/the-press/news/christchurch-earthquake-2011/68328365/i-think-about-suicide-everyday--christchurch-shed-couple
And while I say Maori are like ghosts in our own landscape, there are endless press releases on Iwi development, Maori branding, Maori innovation, bringing Maori land into production or seeking greater productivity from that land which is already a component in the NZ supply chain. Meanwhile, unemployment is stubbornly double-figures.

As for 2016, well the planet still spins on its axis, the Pacific Ring of Fire still rocks and rolls, Aotearoa NZ is still racist (and perhaps more so), Canterbury's environment is still degrading, and Lincoln University continues its struggles to remain a credible tertiary institution.

But let's finish on a positive note :) I think the highlight for Maori economic rights occurred right at the end of the year with the New Zealand high Court deciding on the first claim under the 2011 Takutai Moana Act. Denis Tipene represented his whanau and hapu in  succesfully claiming customary rights on Pohowaitai and Tamaitemioka, off the east coast of Rakiura (Stewart Island).

There are many other cases to come up and as Mr. Tipene says, Rakiura is probably the easiest place to decide on Maori rights, one of the benefits of isolation.

So roll on 2017. My focus is going to shift to Turtle Island, the America's. Watch this space...


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