Ae Marika Column - Hone Harawira - Friday 30 March 2007

got to disagree bro,

When two tamariki Maori (8& 10) are pepper sprayed by the cops, whose going to police that Hone? Its more than once that tamariki Maori have been pepper sprayed by the
Police, whose going to police that? The same lot that police rape?

Giving the police more discretionary power, that will be used to
further oppress our communities. This will result in Maori parents in
jail and Maori children in state 'care'. Empowering grassroots
communities to deal with these issues works, and is completely lacking
in this approach, direct action, critical dialogue and grassroots
organizing would go along way to addressing issues of violence in our
communities. We need to develop community accountability principles
and practices that strengthen our resistance to the criminal justice
system, not empowering and using our people as (the continual) fodder
for it.

The Maori party are good at proving they know all about parliamentary
'democracy'. Moana Jackson's report about Maori & the "criminal
justice system" was written 20 years ago, have they lost faith that we
can do things our way, based on our Tikanga and that our communities
can decide and know what is best for them.



you can send messages of support to this whanau to:


Ae Marika Column - Hone Harawira - Friday 30 March 2007

Don't smack the messenger!

Last week I rang a mate of mine and asked him "Howzit? What you up to?"

"I'm smackin' my mokopuna," he replied. His moko said "what's that for
papa?" and my mate said to him, "well, your stupid bloody uncles are going
to make this illegal next week, so I'm going to give it to you now!" and
then the two of us roared with laughter over the phone. He wasn't smackin'
his moko, but his message was pretty clear.

Sue Bradford has put forward a bill to repeal section 59 of the Crimes Act
so that you can no longer use it as a defence for smacking a child. Those
against the bill will likely think the above story is a little sick. The
funny thing is that those who support the bill will probably think the same

Folks, this bill is no joke, but life often is, and we can sometimes get so
intensely caught up on one side of an argument or the other that we lose our
sense of balance, and with it our sense of humour. I know. I've been there.
But when I hear a good story, I like to share it and I hope you can see the
humour in it for what it is. Nothing more, nothing less.

This week Sue Bradford's bill may come before the House as a matter of
urgency. If it does, that means it'll go up on Wednesday afternoon and all
other business will be suspended until it is voted on. That means we may go
back into the House on Thursday morning at 9am and continue possibly until
midnight and we may even come back on Friday to complete the debate and take
a vote.

Last week I thought the Bill might take a while before it came up for the
vote, and that the Maori Party was hoping to take the issue on tour to get a
handle on how people felt about it. If the bill is tabled as a matter of
urgency, that won't happen which will be a pity.

Some of the korero I've heard has been nasty, but most of it's been well
thought out. The arguments have been strong, but clear and they have really
helped me with the position that I have taken. For all the debate, a world
without violence is worth striving for, and while Sue Bradford's bill may
not be perfect, it does challenge us all to raise our sights beyond the
immediate circumstances of our own lives.

Hone Harawira

Tai Tokerau MP


1 comment:

Ana said...

If we care about our children we must protect them from poverty

9 April 2006

PRESS RELEASE: In Work Payment fails Maori and Pasifika
children Rather than reversing existing disadvantage, the burden of
discrimination built in to the new In Work Payment (IWP) will fall
particularly hard on Maori and Pasifika families, says the Child
Poverty Action Group (CPAG).

CPAG research analyst and author of Hard to Swallow: Foodbanks in NZ
Donna Wynd says tamariki Maori and Pasifika make up just over half of
all those excluded from the IWP's largesse. The IWP fails to address
the poverty of 230,000 New Zealand children.

The IWP is a major plank of the Working for Families package, and was
introduced on April 1 2006. "It is based on the idea that parents'
paid work is the way out of child poverty," explains Wynd. Children
whose parents cannot work the required number of hours weekly, or
receive a benefit, are excluded. CPAG alleges this is discrimination
on the basis of parental work status.

An increasing proportion of children are of Maori or Pacific descent,
and this group has been particularly adversely affected by the rise in
child poverty in recent decades. CPAG's Dr Lorna Dyall says "Tamariki
Maori and Pasifika are more likely to be in families reliant on
insecure jobs, insecure working hours and benefit income. They are
thus are more likely to miss out on the new, long-delayed assistance."
Wynd agrees, adding "Children who, as a matter of government policy,
fall behind because of their family situations are unlikely to grow
into the educated, healthy adults our country needs.

Spending on the bottom income groups needs to increase for these
families to recover the ground they have lost since the economic and
labour market restructuring of the late eighties
and nineties." Dr Dyall points out that, as it is currently designed,
the IWP undermines the Government's commitment to address health
disparities for Maori and Pacific families, along with other
national and international obligations. "Access to secure, adequate
income is urgently needed to safeguard and enhance the health of
generations to come," she says. "More than any adult lifestyle
choices, income status in childhood helps determine health status for
a lifetime."

Wynd emphasises "The Government's stated goal is to ensure `that
families, young and old, are able to be secure and have the
opportunity to reach their full potential.' Under the IWP this goal
will only become more elusive as many of the poorest become relatively
worse off.

CPAG believes the discrimination built into the IWP must be removed,
as a matter of social
justice." In 2001, 35% of children under 15 were of Pacific or Maori
descent, as compared to 21% for the population as a whole. For
children under five years of age the proportion
was 38%.

For more information, see Donna Wynd's background paper Committed to
Fairness and Opportunity? A brief analysis of the impact of the In
Work Payment on

Maori and Pasifika families. Freely downloadable from


For information about CPAG's legal case concerning discrimination in
the IWP, see