March 19, 2020
TPK in pandemic planning loop
The Prime Minister says Māori are being factored into planning for the Covid-19 pandemic, even if the level of consultation may be falling short.
The planning process has come under fire from Ngāti Ruanui leader Debbie Ngarewa-Packer, who says iwi leaders are trying to get in the room but they are meeting resistance from the health, local and central government officials driving the process.
Jacinda Ardern says much of what is being done is an attempt to slow down the expected rise in cases so the health system can cope with those who do need treatment, and Māori are part of that equation.
"So much of what we're trying to achieve now with social distancing does have an impact on the Māori world. It has to be a critical part of our plan. Nanaia Mahuta has been bringing together TPK to help support some of the health activities on the ground at a regional level. It's fair to say we are moving very quickly, and so from time to time there might be things that aren't being done in a consultative way as we would like but that is simply because we are having to move very very fast," she says.
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