Tainui ‘at the table’ for Māori wellbeing decisions through accord with Government

The Koiora Accord will see Tainui iwi working with three different ministries for better outcomes for Māori. Pictured signing are Kiingitanga spokesperson Ngira Simmonds, rear, and Minister of Māori Development Willie Jackson.

WAIKATO TAINUI

The Koiora Accord will see Tainui iwi working with three different ministries for better outcomes for Māori. Pictured signing are Kiingitanga spokesperson Ngira Simmonds, rear, and Minister of Māori Development Willie Jackson.

Tainui iwi and the Government have signed a landmark agreement to develop models to improve wellbeing outcomes for Māori.

The Koiora Accord is a commitment to fostering positive, co-operative relationships based on mana motuhake (Māori self-determination). Under the Accord, the Ministry of Social Development, Ministry of Health and the Ministry for Business, Innovation and Employment and iwi will work together.

Te Kōhao Health managing director Lady Tureiti Moxon welcomes the agreement, saying it’s crucial for iwi to “sit at the table” with decision-makers in every ministry and co-design a more holistic response to the needs of Māori.

“Up until now each Ministry has operated independently of each other which has effectively enabled inequities and poverty to thrive in Aotearoa in terms of health, housing, employment, education and so on.”

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It’s crucial to co-design a more holistic response to the needs of Māori, Te Kōhao Health managing director Lady Tureiti Moxon says.

TE RAU ORA

It’s crucial to co-design a more holistic response to the needs of Māori, Te Kōhao Health managing director Lady Tureiti Moxon says.

“All of these factors impact on health through homelessness, poverty, unemployment and illegal activity,” Moxon said.

Te Kōhao Health is a marae-based provider of health, social, employment, Whānau ora, education and justice services to a predominantly Māori client base.

Ministry of Social Development general manager Māori partnerships and programmes Rena Hona says the signing of the Koiora Accord reflected a values-driven kaupapa (principle or policy).

“The Koiora Accord is a commitment to fostering positive, co-operative relationships based on mana motuhake.

“Not only will this strengthen the bond between Waikato-Tainui and MSD, but will also allow us to work collaboratively with the Ministry of Health and the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment.

“Each agency will work with Waikato Tainui to identify priority areas to work on, setting out the structure and scope of work. The signatory agencies and Waikato Tainui will also connect as a group to identify interconnected areas and ensure the work is integrated.”

Members of Waikato Tainui, including Tukoroirangi Morgan, the chairperson of Te Arataura, the executive committee of Te Whakakitenga, the governance body of Waikato-Tainui, at the signing.

WAIKATO TAINUI

Members of Waikato Tainui, including Tukoroirangi Morgan, the chairperson of Te Arataura, the executive committee of Te Whakakitenga, the governance body of Waikato-Tainui, at the signing.

Hona says work should be underway in a year’s time to start key initiatives.

“Our focus for the next year will be on employment within the health sector. We will be capitalising on training that people completed to support the Covid-19 response, and we will support others to achieve qualifications and access jobs in the health sector.”

Working closely with the community, Te Kōhao Health and Lady Tureiti say education and employment is the key to lifting people out of poverty.

“A strong, healthy, vibrant and prosperous whaanau, hapuu and iwi will bring about the transformational change that is needed in Aotearoa today,” she says.

“Covid-19 showed that our iwi/Māori contribution to the overall health of the country was outstanding.

“I commend the Koiora Accord for the focus they have set down for next year in capitalising on training our non-regulated staff who were instrumental in the roll out of vaccinations and swabbing over the past two and a half years and continue to do so.”

Waikato Tainui could not be reached for comment.

Helping people into employment in the health sector has been flagged by the Ministry of Social Development as an early focus.

WAIKATO TAINUI

Helping people into employment in the health sector has been flagged by the Ministry of Social Development as an early focus.