I was at a meeting recently when a gentleman spoke about a petition he was promoting calling on our local bodies to hold a referendum before instigating the inclusion of Maori representation on our local council. I believe this petition is racism in its worst form, playing on peoples’ fears, despite the man’s assurance that he “...has Maori friends”. The hidden message is of course: ‘there are more of us than them, so of course the vote will go against it, but it will seem to be more than democratic in the process.’
There are some who will be unsure, fearing the promotion of a separatist movement/governance for Maori but that could not be further from the truth. Our whole system has not honoured the Treaty sufficiently and the inclusion of Maori voice/s on the Council is a wonderful way to really ‘hear’ from tangata whenua as partners with a ‘real’ voice - not an advisory committee - but actually being heard and having their vote counted.
There are others who will just be fearful of some perceived threat from Maori as taking over, but this too is a fallacy – the Maori representatives will be only a portion of the votes cast on any given subject – the important thing is that all matters discussed will have their input.
While I am the first to criticize our Council if I believe they have erred, I am now applauding them for this long overdue step towards inclusiveness and true adherence to their Treaty obligations.
We love how creative some people are with their plant giving! This is for goodie bags for a 7 year olds party but we reckon you could borrow this wonderful idea for the Neighbours Day Aotearoa Great Plant Swap!
What a lovely gift to get and it's not just kids who love sunflowers.
ADDED BONUS: if you give your neighbours sunflower seeds you would get to enjoy their beautiful flowers too!
Have you signed up for Neighbours Day 2021 yet? There's lots of ways you can join in...check out our website to register today:
Authorities are bearing the $3m costs of a nine-month clean-up of a toxic chemical stockpile at Marsden Point, Ruakaka, but hope to recover the costs from the companies involved. The work is so dangerous, regular monitoring is needed to test for explosive or flammable air.
Rangihoua Heritage Park is about 2 hours from Whangārei and includes Marsden Cross. It is unofficially the birthplace of the nation after hosting the first Christian service in 1814, which started the first European settlement. Have you been to Rangihoua Heritage Park and taken the walk down to Marsden Cross? What do you think of it?