New strategy unifies all-of-Government approach to help Pacific languages thrive

  • Hon Aupito William Sio

A united approach across all-of-Government underpins the new Pacific Language Strategy, announced by the Minister for Pacific Peoples Aupito William Sio at Parliament today.

“The cornerstone of our Pacific cultures, identities and place in Aotearoa, New Zealand are our Pacific languages. They are at the heart of our wellbeing,” Aupito William Sio said.

“They are spiritual gifts, unique to Aotearoa and the Pacific region. They give us a point of difference and a competitive advantage in the workplace and economy.

“This Strategy demonstrates the Government’s commitment to reverse the declining use of Pacific languages in Aotearoa New Zealand, and ensures Pacific languages thrive and prosper for the sake of future generations’ wellbeing.”

The Strategy will be implemented through a Pacific Languages Government Action Plan and ethnic-specific Community Language Action Plans.

Minister Sio said it will take a long-term approach to supporting Pacific languages across Pacific communities’, Government agencies and other key stakeholders.

“An alarming trend has emerged in the past several decades showing the use of Pacific languages is in decline, and many are in danger of being lost.

“But we are not alone in this journey, and we acknowledge indigenous languages globally, including tangata whenua of Aotearoa, experiencing the journey of loss and hope in championing te reo Māori.

“I am keenly aware of many Pacific young people who whakapapa Māori, and we have a collective responsibility in our families to encourage and support this generation – Generation 6Bs – to be confident and comfortable in both te reo Māori and their heritage Pacific language.”

The Government’s Pacific Languages Strategy 2022 – 2032 was launched at Parliament today in a cultural ceremony which included Minister Sio gifting the strategy to youth leaders.

It is founded on three key objectives:

  • To recognise the value of Pacific languages in Aotearoa
  • To strengthen pathways and resources for learning, and learning in, Pacific languages
  • To see Pacific languages used more often and, in more spaces.

“Our Pacific languages are a taonga for our people and I am calling on our communities to embrace this strategy and to help ensure our reo can be strengthened, celebrated and passed on for many generations to come.

“When Pacific languages are heard, spoken, and celebrated, Pacific communities thrive; and when our Pacific communities thrive, Aotearoa is a better place for all of us. As the home to one of the largest Pacific populations in the world, New Zealand is well-placed to support Pacific languages to thrive.”

The first comprehensive language survey of its kind in Aotearoa, the Leo Moana o Aotearoa project is also being launched alongside the Pacific Languages Strategy.

It provides a clear picture of Pacific language use and attitudes across all regions, ages, and ethnic groups.

This project will be repeated every four years to monitor progress of the Pacific Languages Strategy, and to help to determine where to direct new investment in Pacific languages.

“We have seen through COVID-19 that Pacific languages are fundamental to the survival of Pacific communities.

“Evidence tells us that when our people are strong in their languages, as well as English, they are more likely to be strong mentally, culturally, academically and economically,” Aupito William Sio said.

Editor’s Note: Attached is the PR translated into nine Pacific languages, including Samoan below.

O le Fuafuaga fou mo Gagana o Atumotu Pasefika ua fa’atasia ai galuega ma matāgaluega a le Mālō atoa ina ia olaola gagana o atumotu Pasefika

O le galulue felagolagoma’i, o le ta’iala lea mo matagaluega a le malo atoa mo le fa’atinoga o le Fuafuaga mo Gagana o Atumotu Pasefika.

Na saunoa le afioga i le Minisitā, Aupito William Sio, “O le gagana, o le ma’atulimanu lea mo aganu’u ma fa’asinomaga a tagata Pasefika ma o le totonugālēmū lea o le soifua laulelei o tatou tagata.”

O measina ma tofi ia e patino tonu i Aotearoa ma le lautele o le Pasefika. E tūlaga ese ai i tatou ma isi, ma e fa’apea ona fa’aeaea ai lo tatou tulaga i le si’osi’omaga o galuega ma le tamāoaiga fa’alemālō.

“O lenei Fuafuaga mo Gagana o Atumotu Pasefika, e fa’ailoa ai matāfaioi a le malo e fō’ia ai le tulaga o lo’o lamatia ma mou atu ai gagana o atumotu Pasefika i Aotearoa, Niu Sila ma e mautinoa ai le olaola ma le manuia o a tatou gagana auā le soifua laulelei a tupulaga faia’e.”

O le a fa’atino le Fuafuaga mo Gagana o Atumotu Pasefika e ala i Fuafuaga Fa’atino a le Mālō fa’apea le Fuafuaga Fa’atino a Saofa’iga o tagata atumotu ta’itasi.

Na saunoa le afioga i le Minisitā, e ao ona fuafuaina se taimi umi mo le lagolagoina o gagana o atumotu Pasefika e aofia ai saofa’iga o tagata Pasefika, matāgaluega a le Mālō fa’apea isi fa’alāpotopotoga ma pa’aga autū.

O se tulaga mata’utia ua alia’e mai i tausaga ua tuana’i, o le fa’aitiitia o le fa’aaogāina o gagana o atumotu Pasefika ma o le tele o gagana o lo’o tauau lava ina mou ma lē iloa atu.

Ae e lē o tu’uaunoaina i tatou i lenei folauga, ma e amana’ia ai le fa’atāuaina o gagana fa’aleatunu’u i le lalolagi atoa, e aofia ai ma tagatanu’u po tagata o le fanua o Aotearoa ua masani lelei i le tulaga o le mou atu o le gagana, ma le taumafaiga e toe tapu’e ma fa’aolaola a latou gagana.

“Ou te iloa le to’atele o le tupulaga Pasefika e tau o latou gafa i tagata Maori ma o le tatou tiute tauave i totonu o tatou aiga, ina ia fa’amalosia ma lagolagoina lenei augatupulaga ou te fa’aigoaina o le 6Bs – ina ia maua le loto toa ma mafai ona tautatala i gagana e lua – o le gagana Maori ma o latou lava gagana o atumotu Pasefika.”

Sa fa’atino i le aso nei, le fa’alaua’iteleina ma le fa’aalia aloa’ia o Le Fuafuaga a le Mālō mo Gagana Atumotu Pasefika 2022 – 2032 i le maota o le Palemene, e ala i se sauniga fa’apitoa fa’aleaganu’u na taua’aoina ai e le Minisitā lenei Fuafuaga i ta’ita’i talavou na fai ma sui o atumotu Pasefika ma gagana ta’itasi.

O le Fuafuaga mo Gagana o Atumotu Pasefika, e fa’avae lea i sini autū e tolu:

  • Fa’ailoaina le tāua o gagana o atumotu Pasefika i Aotearoa
  • Faamalosia ‘auala ma alagā’oa mo le a’oa’oina o gagana o atumotu Pasefika ma le fa’aaogaina o ia gagana i le a’oa’oina
  • Fa’atuina si’osi’omaga mo gagana o atumotu Pasefika ina ia fa’aaogāina pea, ma i le tele o isi avanoa ma nofoaga.

O a tatou gagana, o measina ia mo tatou tagata ma e valuvalusia ai a’a o le fau i le talosagaina o saofa’iga o tagata Pasefika ina ia opogi lenei Fuafuaga mo le fa’amautinoa, le fa’amalosia ma le fa’aauau o a tatou gagana mo le lumana’i.

“A fa’alogoina, fa’aaogāina ma fa’amamaluina gagana o atumotu Pasefika, o le a fa’apenā ona manuia saofa’iga o tagata lautele, ma avea ai Aotearoa ma se nofoaga lelei mo tagata uma. Ona o Aotearoa fo’i o le nofoaga o lo’o soifua ma aumau ai tagata Pasefika e aupito to’atele i le lalolagi, e ono avea ai ma se atunu’u e lagolagoina le olaola o a tatou gagana.

O le Fuafuaga mo Gagana o Atumotu Pasefika 2022-2032, o le ulua’i itu’aiga fuafuaga fa’apenei i Aotearoa, fa’atasi ai ma le ulua’i ripoti o su’esu’ega o le polōketi o le Leo Moana o Aotearoa o le a fa’apea ona fa’alaua’iteleina ma fa’aalia aloa’ia fa’atasi i lenei fa’amoemoe.

O lo’o atagia i lenei ripoti le fa’aaogāina ma le fa’atāuaina e tagata Pasefika o a latou gagana i Niu Sila.

E ta’ifa tausaga ma fa’atino lenei su’esu’ega mo le iloilo ma le maitauina o tulaga o le fa’atinoga ma le aogā o le Fuafuaga mo Gagana Atumotu Pasefika, ma e mafai ai fo’i ona fa’ailo tulaga e ao ona mana’omia le atina’e tautupe mo le aga’i i luma a gagana o atumotu Pasefika.

Na saunoa fo’i le afioga o Aupito e fa’apea, “Ua tatou va’aia i le pesi o le fa’ama’i a le COVID-19, le tāua tele o gagana o atumotu Pasefika i le fa’asaoina o soifua o a tatou tagata Pasefika.

O lo’o faamaonia i fa’amaumauga, afai e maua’a ma mautū gagana o atumotu Pasefika ma le Faaperetania, o le a fa’apea fo’i ona malolosi ma manuia o tatou tagata i tulaga fa’alemafaufau, fa’aleaganu’u, fa’alea’oa’oga ma le tamao’aiga.”

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