The PSA is heartened by indications the Crown intends to acknowledge injustices suffered by wāhine Māori and to address inequalities they have endured as a result.
In January the Waitangi Tribunal registered a claim by the PSA Rūnanga, Te Rūnanga o Ngā Toa Āwhina, as part of the tribunal’s Mana Wahine Inquiry.
Claim Wai 2864 calls out the Crown for failures that have relegated generations of wāhine Maori to low paid jobs and vulnerable work conditions.
These includes failures to provide adequate education, and to eliminate bias and discrimination in the workplace for wāhine Māori.
The PSA Rūnanga is pleased by the allocation of $6.2 million in this year’s budget to progress the Inquiry.
We are also encouraged by comments by Minister for Women, Julie Anne Genter who says the Inquiry will be looking to make early acknowledgements of problems, and focus on what can be changed to address injustice and inequality.
The Minister says data confirms wāhine Māori continue to have poorer social, education, health and employment outcomes compared to Pākeha women.
“It is significant to us that the Minister has highlighted the work being undertaken to close the gender pay gap for Māori women in particular,” Te Rūnanga says.
“She also acknowledges a responsibility to improve the wellbeing of wāhine Māori, their whānau and communities.”
PSA claim lawyer Tania Te Whenua says she is hopeful putea will be set aside to research the nature and extent of the compounding inequities faced by wāhine Māori