Friday, July 16, 2010

Our UN Review of Indigenous rights coming up

It will be interesting to see what the report says, after the visit of United Nations Special Rapporteur on the Situation of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms of Indigenous Peoples Professor James Anaya, from 18 to 23 July.

From ODT
"Prof Anaya will review the issues reported by his predecessor, Rodolfo Stavenhagen who visited in November 2005 to investigate whether the Foreshore and Seabed Act breached Maori rights."
He recommended the Act be repealed and a constitutional review to recognise Maori rights of self-determination based on the Treaty of Waitangi and international law.
The Government is now consulting over plans to repeal the foreshore law and prefers to legislate that no one owns it.
What a joke - I hope Professor Anaya sees what a no-solution this national and maori party solution is. I felt a bit sick when I read this bit from pita sharples
"This Government remains committed to building and maintaining constructive relationships with Maori to achieve better results for Maori, which will benefit New Zealand as a whole. We welcome the UN's perspective of our country's progress," Minister of Maori Affairs Pita Sharples said.
Especially when I remembered this proposed extension to the 90 day period where an employer can fire you without even giving you a reason, from RadioNZ
"But Maori Party MP Te Ururoa Flavell says the proposed change could add salt to the wounds of young Maori who are already finding it hard to get jobs.
He says the Maori Party will be vigorously opposing any move that further marginalises young Maori.
And I thought about what is happening in prisons to many maori, the double bunking, the reduction of rights, the increased likelihood of maori being in prison and being imprisioned. And i considered the GST rise, the cutting of night classes and the new provisions that have been put in place to restrict someone from seeking help from ACC when they have been sexually abused, and the unemployed, the abuse of Tuhoe and Ngati Porou, the destruction and desceration of our sacred places, of our rights as indigenous people, of the waterways and the land and all of the other government policies and you know what Pita - I don't agree with you. There has been a massive attact upon maori rights and the lives of all maori, along with the poor and vulnerable in this country. There is no pass mark from me.

I hope the truth is told but I somehow doubt that Prof Anaya will hear much of it around the government table.

Footnote - I have chosen to rant on about the things that need to be changed but there are some good things happening at all levels for maori and I want to acknowledge that too.

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