Kaupapa | Initiative
Kookiri ki Taamakimakaurau Trust (the Trust) is a kaupapa Maaori organisation with the purpose of preventing and eliminating waipiro harm to Maaori. Having profound personal experience with alcohol related harm, Kaiaarahi of the Trust, Raawiri Ratuu (Waikato-Tainui, Ngaati Maniapoto, Ngaati Apakura, Ngaati Mahuta, Ngaati Korokii, Ngaati Tipaa, Ngaati Te Ata Waiohua) has been a community champion for alcohol law reform and harm prevention in Aotearoa for many years. Raawiri sought support from Awhi to take his advocacy to the next level.
Wero | The Challenge
Before Raawiri began his mahi, there had been little research into the size and scale of alcohol harm to Maaori. This proved to be a significant barrier, as there was no suitable foundation on which to support or substantiate the need for reform of the way alcohol is sold in Aotearoa.
“Alcohol harm has been a long standing issue in Aotearoa – but what has been missing from the narrative is the harm from alcohol to Maaori” Raawiri says.
Given the lack of Aotearoa-specific data Raawiri filed a claim (WAI 2624) as part of the Waitangi Tribunal’s Health and Services Outcomes inquiry (WAI 2575), focusing on the legislative failings of the Sale and Supply of Alcohol Act 2012 and the subsequent prejudice and harm suffered by Māori as a result of those failings. Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD) was central to the claim: it is estimated that FASD is the single largest alcohol-related harm impacting Maaori, yet only Australian data is used to estimate its prevalence in Aotearoa.
Te Āhua Mahi | Our Approach
Awhi worked with Raawiri to refine the Trust’s message, in order to better communicate the need for immediate action to reduce and prevent alcohol-related harms to Maaori through government policy. Immediate action to support those impacted by or living with FASD remains central to this mahi.
“From our very first hui, Awhi inspired confidence in me that we were going to be able to achieve the things I’ve always wanted but didn’t have the expertise to do,” Raawiri says.
Awhi also supported Raawiri to engage with Ministers and Members of Parliament throughout New Zealand’s health system reforms, to ensure the voices of whaanau, haapori, hapuu and iwi Maaori were being heard at the highest levels.
“Awhi has brought their own personality and experience to this mahi – as Maaori, they understand my perspective and can articulate it well in everything that they produce.”
Ngā Hua | The Outcome
By working with Awhi, the Trust has secured an unprecedented amount of recognition for the need to address FASD and other alcohol harms to Maaori—by both the media and the Crown. Following Raawiri’s Waitangi Tribunal claim, the Crown admitted that they have failed Maaori and are now working with the Trust to improve Health outcomes for Maaori.
I absolutely recommend Awhi. They have stuck with me on this kaupapa and together we are making real progress to address alcohol harm to Maaori.