Māori Leaders in Health mount historic Waitangi Tribunal Claim

Claims from two groups of Māori health leaders are being heard in the Waitangi

Tribunal from 15 October next week at Tūrangawaewae Marae in Ngaruawahia as part

of stage one of the its national kaupapa inquiry into health services and outcomes.

The two claimant groups (under claims Wai 1315 and Wai 2687) say that inequity and

institutionalised racism in the health system currently exists and the situation must

change. The shared position is based on national Māori health statistics and status

which is evident of the Crown failure to care for Māori health and wellbeing.

They share the view that Mana Motuhake, self determination and Māori autonomy

produces better health outcomes and saves lives. The claimants seek

recommendations from the Tribunal for legislative reform of the system for Māori to

have autonomy of their own healthcare services to organise, develop and deliver.

“Our Wai claim has been 13 years in the waiting after first filing back in 2005 in

response to the Government’s Primary Health Care Strategy. What we saw then

continues now - the system is not meeting the needs of Māori. The inequalities that

exist between Māori health and the health of others is a national outcry for our people

and our Nation” says, Lady Tureiti Moxon, Managing Director of Te Kōhao Health,

submitting on behalf of Wai 1315, a group of Māori involved in Primary care in the North

Island.

Both claimant groups consider the Crown did not establish the health system to work for

Māori. By elevating Mana Motuhake it enables the claimants to determine solutions that

work for whānau given the extensive knowledge that they possess. The effect is Tino

Rangatiratanga, Māori will take responsibility for Māori health and well-being.

“The ultimate solution lies in constitutional reform based on Te Tiriti o Waitangi that

entrenches equity of outcome and Māori participation in achieving this” says Simon

Royal, Chief Executive of the National Hauora Coalition and claimant in WAI 2687 - the

other claim being heard in stage one. “In the meantime legislative reform and public

policy change is required ensuring Māori health is adequately resourced - so we can

see Māori thrive.”

The claimant groups are looking to the Tribunal to focus its recommendations on a

future for Māori where Māori have control over hauora and where there is support for

Māori whānau. The claimants also seek recommendations on redress for issues faced

by Māori that have tried in earnest to implement Hauora Māori within a system that

disregards Māori systems of care.

For media queries please contact:

Wai 2687: Tammy Dehar, National Hauora Coalition, 021 412 203.

Wai 1315: Joyce Maipi, 021 132 7239 and Sarah Sparks, 021 318 813.