June 10, 2015
New whare for te reo protection
A member of an independent working group looking at the Maori Language (Te Reo Maori) Bill believes proposed changes will encourage cooperation between crown and Maori to protect the language.
The group was called together by Maori Development Minister Te Ururoa Flavell in response to widespread concern over the bill put forward by his predecessor Pita Sharples.
Rawinia Higgins says the foundations of the bill around the creation of a new body Te Matawai seemed sound, but there were areas that needed clearer definition of the respective roles of crown and iwi.
"We’re using the analogy of a whare. The sides of a house are representative of both Te Matawai and the crown but also spaces where the house actually joins together it has to work together on a shared vision values and principles" she says.
Rawinia Higgins says the main issue is to give whanau, hapu and iwi control of the structure around Maori language.
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