Tariana Turia has responded to the warning issued today by the Public Service Association by calling for calm.
“The allegation that public service Maori jobs will be cut to fund Whanau Ora simply doesn’t stack up” said Mrs Turia. “As far as I am aware, no final decisions have been made around the transfer of the Atawhaingia Te Pa Harakeke framework; and I understand that discussions about the future arrangements for the programme are still proceeding”.
“But in the first instance, the programme being referred to by Brenda Pilott, Atawhaingia Te Pa Harakeke, has its origins in te Ao Maori, not the public service. It is a concept which has been driven and delivered by the community first and foremost – and it will continue to be owned and supported as such.
"Atawhaingia Te Pa Harakeke has been in existence now for the last decade – in fact when I was a Minister in the Labour Government in 2000 it was a key initiative that I supported in the context of capacity building".
“The programme was developed by Huhana Rokx, the late Meagan Joe and Mereana Pitman, and it was based on the premise that Maori values and ideals are an essential foundation for the positive progression of whanau Maori”.
“Just over two months ago, I met with the Kahui Whakaruruhau Kaumatua O Atawhaingia Te Pa Harakeke who provide the cultural, te reo and tikanga support to Te Komako – the management and team of workers who participate in delivering the programme on marae and within Maori communities.
“Together we shared our thoughts around how the philosophy and impact of Atawhaingia Te Pa Harakeke could work within the context of Whanau Ora. The Kahui Kaumatua is a group that I hold in the highest esteem and I am appreciative of their support, as we continue to discuss the relationship between our work.
Ultimately the transformation that we see in Whanau Ora is not so much about programmes; about staff; or indeed the public service. It is about a transformation of thinking, so that we place whanau outcomes at the centre of our discussions.
I look forward to working further with those involved with Atawhaingia Te Pa Harakeke, and I will not be deterred in this important work by anxiety from the PSA which appears to be out of touch with current progress”.
Members of the Kahui Whakaruruhau Kaumatua O Atawhaingia Te Pa Harakeke
· Mokikiwa Hutchens (nee Stirling) of Te Whanau a Apanui / Ngai Tahu
· Andrew Sarich of Ngapuhi
· Nicholas Adams of Ngapuhi
· Manera Tohu (Ngati Whatua)
· Mere Tau of Ngapuhi
· Taipari Munro of Ngapuhi
· Waiariki (Dick) Grace of Ngati Porou
· Hinewirangi Kohu-Morgan of Tauranga Moana/ Kahungunu
· Hana Tukukino of Hauiti, Ngati Porou
· Piritata Kirkwood (Waikato)
· Dr Rangimarie Pere of Waikaremoana/Tuhoe