Investing in the wellbeing of Māori will drive both our economic and social recovery from the effects of COVID-19.
This year’s Māori Budget package invests in the right areas to help our economic recovery plan while ensuring we deliver on the promises we made to Māori in areas like housing, health, education, tamariki, whānau, justice reform and te reo me ōna tikanga Māori. The total Māori Budget package is in excess of $1 billion.
The Government’s Māori Ministers; Kelvin Davis, Nanaia Mahuta, Peeni Henare, Willie Jackson and Meka Whaitiri have announced a historic investment moment for Māori.
The social and economic effects of COVID-19 were still being felt by many whānau across Aotearoa,” Nanaia Mahuta said.
“Māori Ministers have worked hard to respond to some of the most pressing issues our whānau are facing while ensuring that our social investment will bring with it economic growth in regions with the greatest need.
“This Budget package builds on the previous investment we have made in economic initiatives like He Poutama Rangatahi, Mana in Mahi, Māori Cadetships and Māori apprenticeships, as well as advances we have made in Justice Reform, in the education sector and in protecting te reo Māori,” Associate Minister for Māori Development Nanaia Mahuta said.
“Building houses and upgrading kura not only provides whānau with homes and better education, it creates jobs and stimulates our local economy.
“Investing in Māori tourism helps bring back jobs and supports our small businesses to ready themselves to reconnect with the world.
“And our investment in Health, alongside our Vaccine Strategy, means when we do reconnect – we do so while keeping our people safe,” Nanaia Mahuta said.
Health and Housing
Associate Māori Housing and Māori Health Minister Peeni Henare said improving Māori health and ensuring Māori had access to warm dry homes, were the core reasons behind the $242.8 million investment into Māori health and $380 million targeted towards a Māori Housing package.
The funding for Māori health includes $98.1 million for the establishment of the Māori Health Authority, $17.8 million to support of iwi/Māori partnership boards and $126.8 million for Hauora Māori programmes run by the Māori Health Authority including funding for increasing provider capability and a Māori health innovation fund.
Budget 2021 will invest $380 million into Māori housing across Aotearoa, the funding will deliver approximately:
- 1,000 additional new houses that will be a range of papakāinga housing, affordable rentals, transitional housing, and owner-occupied housing
- repairs for 700 Māori-owned houses improving the quality of homes for whānau in most need, led by Te Puni Kōkiri
- $30 million towards building future capability for iwi and Māori groups to accelerate housing projects and a range of support services.
We have also ensured that $350 million of the Housing Acceleration Fund will be targeted to investment in infrastructure to support Māori and iwi providers build homes for whānau Māori.
“Health and Housing have always been our top priority and these funds will help get better health outcomes for our people and enable us to partner with Māori from across the regions to build a suite of housing solutions for Māori on the ground.”
The investment in Housing will also create jobs and employment opportunities for many areas that need them in the wake of COVID-19.
“The funding injection will support the new and independent Māori Health Authority and the iwi/Māori partnership boards, with a significant portion allocated to Hauora Māori Health programmes run by the Māori Health Authority including funding for increasing provider capability and a Māori health innovation fund,” Peeni Henare said.
Minister for Māori Development Willie Jackson said Māori tourism faced significant challenges as a result of COVID-19.
Last year, the Government invested $12 million in NZ Māori Tourism, which helped support Māori businesses to pivot, transition or hibernate in response to COVID-19.
Budget 2021 will support three separate kaupapa – the expansion of the business support services already offered by New Zealand Māori Tourism, work to position the Māori Tourism Industry for the future, as well as providing funding for anchor projects like the East Coast cycle track.
“Now we are working towards reconnecting with the world, we are helping to kick start our Māori tourism sector by investing $15 million, as a charge against the COVID-19 Response and Recovery Fund, in their restart to enable them to play a strong role in our economic recovery,” Willie Jackson said.
Tamariki and Whānau
Minister for Children Kelvin Davis announced that Budget 2021 has set aside $23.4 million in the wellbeing of tamariki and whānau in the greatest need.
Oranga Tamariki will be working with partners in 2021 to develop a strategy for the children’s system that responds to the findings of the recent reviews, as well as upcoming reports from the Waitangi Tribunal and the Ministerial Advisory Board.
The Strategy is likely to envisage a system where tamariki with the greatest need are safe and supported within their whānau by marae, hapū, iwi and their communities at the earliest opportunity, enabled by a system that’s trusted to step in only when needed.
Budget 2021 funding will help ensure we develop solutions that take a by Māori, for Māori approach to improve the support that Māori can deliver to tamariki and whānau in need.
“We have a lot of work still to do with Oranga Tamariki but this targeted funding will help move the organisation in the right direction by enabling us to devolve more power to the regions and to Māori, and ensuring tamariki stay with their whānau where possible,” Kelvin Davis said.
Māori pathways for wāhine in Christchurch women’s prison was just one of a number of justice reform initiatives the five Ministers were announcing in Budget 2021, Kelvin Davis said.
“We are investing more than $10 million into this new co-designed pathway ensuring wāhine are provided a Māori pathway out of prison. A journey they can share with their whānau.
“Across the system, we are investing in Māori solutions. $70 million is to be invested in Te Pae Oranga iwi community panels – a tikanga Māori and whānau ora based alternative to court for low-level offending.
“We are investing $12 million to prevent family violence and sexual violence by expanding whānau-centred facilitation by kaupapa Māori providers, $13.7 million in Whakaorangia te mana tangata – which aims to uplift the mana of offenders, victims and their whānau,” Kelvin Davis said.
Over $150 million will be invested in Māori education through this year’s Budget.
This includes a $20 million package to support Māori boarding schools, an investment in our future, Meka Whaitiri said.
“Our Māori boarding schools grow the next generation of Māori leaders, and it is important that we preserve the vital role they play in the education of our rangatahi.”
As well as Māori boarding schools, Budget 2021 addresses immediate cost pressures facing wānanga with $32.3 million and also sets aside funds to start to address the inequitable funding of wānanga.
For tamariki and mokopuna funding has also been set aside to improve pay in our kōhanga reo.
We are also investing $77 million in property funding to build and expand schools delivering Māori medium education and investing in Māori learners’ success by putting more funding into Te Reo Matatini, Pāngarau, and Marautanga.
“Māori education has seen a significant investment boost under this Government, Budget 2021 is a further investment in the education of our tamariki and rangatahi,” Meka Whaitiri said.
Māori Data Sovereignty
“A lesson we learnt from our experience with COVID-19 is the need for better data collection, and the necessity for us to partner with Māori to gather this information that will provide better guidance to iwi and to the Government when making policy decisions in areas that affect our people,” Associate Minister of Statistics Meka Whaitiri said.
“We have secured through Budget 2021, $14.1 million to support our Treaty partners in building their data collection and analysis capability by assisting iwi to collect responses to the 2023 Census in two geographic areas. This initiative also aims to support the existing 2023 Census programme by improving response rates in priority groups.”
Te Reo me ōna tikanga
“Safeguarding te reo Māori for future generations is a goal this Government is taking seriously, and Budget 2021 enables us to take the next step in achieving these aspirations,” Willie Jackson said.
“An investment of $14.8 million is going to further support the implementation of the Māori language strategy, helping us to achieve our goal of one million New Zealanders able to speak basic te reo Māori by 2040.
“More equitable funding for Māori is vital and investing $42 million into Māori broadcasting to build a sustainable Māori media sector and investing in programme content, is a step in the right direction.
“We all want to mihi to our fellow Māori Minister Kiri Allan. Before she took leave she secured $45.7 million operating and $850,000 capital funding for emergency management. An immediate priority will be growing the role iwi Māori play.
“We are all very proud of the Māori Budget package for 2021. It strikes the right balance between economic recovery and social investment, all while ensuring we take a ‘by Māori, for Māori’ approach in areas like justice reform, health and education.
“We are still recovering from the impacts of COVID-19, and we have still more to do. Budget 2021 shows we are tackling the hard problems while putting the wellbeing of whānau at the centre of our solutions,” Willie Jackson said.