Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Good development involves maori

Taieri Mouth

Good news from Taieri Mouth where developers have been instructed to resubmit plans so that they address local maori concerns, raised about a new development.

"Developers of a planned subdivision at Taieri Mouth have been asked to revise their plans to address Maori concerns and those of the nearby school who say their view of the coastline will be lost if the 23-lot development goes ahead... "

"In an interim decision released this week, the panel, chaired by Clutha Mayor , has given the applicant a month to provide an altered plan to address those concerns.

Mr Hayes said the panel heard "compelling evidence" from Te Runanga o Otakou and Taieri Whanau about their relationship with the the coast in the location of the subdivision.

Their chief concerns included the development of housing, and effluent disposal in the area on the headland was "culturally inappropriate" and would detract from the mana of the waahi tapu sites on and beneath the headland.

They were also concerned about the loss of access over the headland during high tide, the potential for effluent to be discharged into a small stream, the loss of the "present vista" of Moturata from the Taieri Beach School and the loss of bird habitat."

It's right that developers should consider the effects of what they are doing on maori. Who better to consult with, than tangata whenua - to ensure that the development has the best possible chance of success.


feddabonn said...

damn right! it sometimes seems to me that in spite of gross injustices, aotearoa new zealand has been largely more considerate to its indigenous populations than many other places. would you tend to agree?

was also wondering how you reacted to the maori visa issue. while i dislike the financial gains aspect of the whole thing, i think it *does raise some rather important issues. what do you think?

Marty Mars said...

It's a tough question feddabonn. On one hand - yes maori perhaps haven't been treated as badly as some other indigenous cultures, yet this week we still have news that maori receive poorer health care/outcomes as non-maori. And it's 2009!

I think we can pull a thin veneer across and say that we are doing well, certainly governments have used that line to explain why they don't sign UN indigenous rights agreements etc. And maori have recently led protests against the supercity, the foreshore and seabed legislation is being reconsidered... so if it is looked at from that point of view perhaps we still have quite a way to go.

The question about the visa's is also interesting and I have to say i don't really know enough about it to say. But i can't stand exploitation of people so i have some concerns. It appears as if the practice of whangai-ing actually allows programs like Omiti's to occur -

In my gut it doesn't sit right with me but i can't quite pin down why... what do you think?

feddabonn said...

@treatmemt of maori: i've been reading about the protests, and definitely think there is a way to go. it'll get better, kia kaha.

@visas: i strongly disagree with omiti taking money, but think this has raised interesting questions about immigration here. off the cuff, i think there are a lot more europeans (and asians?) who qualify for residency in NZ than people from the pacific. if that is so, (and i really need to dig into the numbers) it would seem that the system is biased against immigration from the pacific islands.

while i have little standing to say whether such a situation, even if it exists, is good or bad, i do believe the questions should be asked.

Marty Mars said...

Yes, the questions definately need to be asked.

There is no doubt that pacific islanders have had a hard time here. I like people moving here to live - the major thing I would change, is that before they get to move here, i would give everyone a course in maori history and tikanga. This would give the correct base for them to join and contribute to our country. I'd also look to providing more places for people from indigenous backgrounds. How much easier for them to settle here if they had tangata whenua looking after them.