September 07, 2012
Investment needed in poor Maori communities
This year’s public health champion has called for reinvestment into New Zealand’s poorest communities.
Cindy Kiro, who is now Head of the School of Public Health at Massey University, told this week’s Public Health Association conference that Maori and Pasifika families tend to live in high need areas with poor infrastructure.
She says the pursuit of global competitiveness by successive governments has led to decades of under-investment in New Zealand’s people and communities.
“The key thing I think is a challenge to say do we have to completely rethink where we are going so we can recognise the need to invest collectively in communities that still have people resource, still have natural resources and find some way to rebuild those, because that is a part of addressing the poverty that we experience disproportionately as Maori,” Dr Kiro says.
She says such investment also addresses the needs of rural and smaller communities.