Maori, What is HP

Te Tiriti o Waitangi is a ‘professional imperative’

A new paper, published in UK publication Ethnicity and Health in June, indicates we have a way to go to address ongoing inequities for Māori and other indigenous groups.  It points out that, in the Aotearoa context, Te Tiriti o Waitangi “is a legislative, policy and professional imperative for the public health community.”   HPF Deputy Executive Director, Trevor Simpson has co-authored the paper, which finds that there is variable application of Te Tiriti o Waitangi and there is room for further development in many areas of the New Zealand public health service.  It points to Treaty Understanding of Hauora in Aotearoa-New Zealand (TUHA-NZ) as “landmark document” and an essential tool to operationalise the policies outlined in Te Tiriti.   The paper Realising the rhetoric: Refreshing public health providers’ efforts to honour Te Tiriti o Waitangi in Aotearoa, New Zealand investigates the ways public health units and non-governmental organisations meet their Te Tiriti o Waitangi obligations in terms of service delivery to Māori. Drawing on data from a nationwide survey of public health providers the article argues New Zealand public health providers can strengthen efforts to advance tino rangatiratanga (Māori control over things Māori) in every day practice.   Trevor worked alongside Heather Came (Senior Lecture, Auckland University of Technology), Tim McCreanor (Associate Professor Massey University) and Claire Doole, (Senior Lecturer, Auckland University of Technology), to bring this important paper to fruition.   The work was supported with a grant from the Faculty of Health and Environmental Sciences, Auckland University of Technology.