Anti-violence campaign – a different approach: Make Some Noise on August 8th

From: International Indigenous Solidarity []
Sent: Tuesday, 7 August 2007 3:15 p.m.
Subject: Press Release: SUPPORT WHĀNAU MĀORI: Make Some Noise campaign.

SUPPORT WHĀNAU MĀORI: Make Some Noise campaign.

Press Release: AWA: Allies of Whānau o Aotearoa

Allies of Whānau o Aotearoa (AWA), is a new Māori group, formed out of a hui of Māori social service workers and community activists to advocate support for all whānau o Aotearoa. AWA is promoting whānau based solutions to whānau problems.

“We want whānau, and our allies, to MAKE SOME NOISE tomorrow to show that they support solutions to the challenges faced by whānau Māori that are conceived, developed and delivered by Māori for Māori,” says spokesperson Te Kanikani Tautoko.

The group met on Saturday August 4th, 2007 and developed a list of requirements that whānau need from their allies:

– be willing to listen to whānau

– acknowledge that the solutions rest in Māori hands

– be respectful toward Māori

– speak when invited

– be accountable to Māori

– be willing to share power

Example: allies would advocate support and funding to whānau, to address the breakdown of Māori society that has occured with the loss of our lands, language and culture, and economic well being.

“We have had many non-Māori broadcasting what they think is wrong with Māori people and whānau in the last week. While we appreciate their concern, non-Māori need to recognise the following fundamentals: This is not a ‘Māori problem’, so much as it is a colonisation problem and Māori communities must lead the development of solutions.” Said Te Kanikani Tautoko

Te Kanikani Tautoko continued, “the silence proposed by a coalition of non-Māori organisations is counter-productive; engaging in korero and making noise is a more appropriate approach. Our aim with MAKE SOME NOISE is to gather solidarity from genuine supporters of whānau.”

“Another central purpose of MAKE SOME NOISE is to mihi (acknowledge/honour) the grief and mamae (pain) that the whanau of baby Nia, and other whanau who have lost children to violence are going through at this time. For this reason we ask supporters of MAKE SOME NOISE to kōrero on this issue, sing waiata tautoko (songs of support) and/or play taonga puoro (Maori instruments) in support of the whanau. At 12.12pm, Wednesday August 8th 2007.”

“We worry that the solutions promoted by many non-Māori pundits in news media this past week will make things worse. For example, the marriage counseling proposed by the Sensible Sentencing Trust, Family First and For the Sake of Our Children Trust is useless as it does not deal with the root causes of violence. We need a new system that shares resources fairly.”

People who MAKE SOME NOISE this Wednesday will be sending a message that they support whānau; they believe that whānau hold the solutions and will be advocating working genuinely with Māori to support whānau. AWA urges all people of Aotearoa who support a fair and equitable approach to solving violence in Māori communities to MAKE SOME NOISE with us at 12:12pm, Wednesday August 8th, 2007.

Please contact AWA spokesperson Te Kanikani Tautoko for further information or comment: 021 155 1154 or

ImagineNative Action”Building solidarity between Indigenous and Peoples of Colour communities. Defending our whenua & peoples against racism and exploitation since 2007″Email received and posted by Anita.

3 thoughts on “Anti-violence campaign – a different approach: Make Some Noise on August 8th

  1. Iokapeta 213

    i think that it is great that these Maori activists are willing to speak out and try and to organise some appropriate means to the problems they are facing

    the story about baby Nia is awful. there is no excuse for that kind of behaviour!!!!

    it disturbs me that her ethnicity was relevant in the media. the fact that ANYONE could do this crime is disgusting, but to emphasize her heiritage is merely stereotypically relevant.

    Yes, there is alot of violence in lower socio-economic house holds, but that does not mean that every Maori person behaves in this manner! to come out and class a whole race in the same category is a bit odd

    just like with feminists, there are levels feminism, and different views that each tend to focus on

    what exactly would singing and shouting do? in the short term it might gather some support and people will look unified for the cause, but what IS the cause? the points that were mapped out in the article are very vague

    for anything to be done, people need to think long and hard about their strategy!

    yes, Maori are a communal people, they typically aren’t fond of the “counselling” approach to solutions, but obviously what ever theyre doing at the moment isnt working, so naturally.. exploring different channels of possibility could work too??

    the state of violence depicted in the media is at disturbing levels and needds adhering to… congratulations to those that are willing to try to make immense, but i think you need to seriously think about it alot more

  2. Ana

    I think the point that this group (which i think is cool cos i signed up with them) has the great initiative of making noise not to just make noise but its a sign of rebuking society and its norms. Because what media ( as we all know) depicts is generally crap-and though some of it may be true the question of ‘from whos p.o.v etc’ must be asked because we cant just take what we see without further research to get a fuller story and background information.
    It is frustrating and will be awhile before institutional racism and forms of such discrimination lessen and hopefully dissappear (baby Nia) but the statistics surrounding lower-socio economic reflect not on the problem of an ethnic culture but society as a whole.
    The merge between non-western cultures and the majority clashes and although there are initiatives that are there with great sympathy and reason to help, often start with the community itself to help itself. (Which is what ImagineNative is doing in this instance to begin the rift of making people aware.)
    In response as a whole to the article I think this is great and I hope to see ImagineNative or other maori leaders at the next Indiginous peoples conference in Hawaii ( i went to the previous one in Canada) inwhich indigionous people use their knowledge form their cultures and former knowledge to heal what has become of today.
    ‘This is not a ‘Māori problem’, so much as it is a colonisation problem and Māori communities must lead the development of solutions.” Said Te Kanikani Tautoko’
    I think this statement makes sense and is true as a heavy example of clash of culture and today shows the outcome in many ways.
    In relation to women (of course), I think that the ideals of having the father as the protectorer of the home and breadwinner is accustomed but the mother I believe is a great victim of colonisation-in Maori culture particularly-she is the mother, wife, sister, daughter, nurturer, comforter etc-but she is the one that holds and emphasises that strong bond.
    Before the introduction of Europeans the woman was in the speaking house (marae?) and sat behind the men and was not because she wasnt important-but as she was of great importance. Today she is not included.
    In relation to violence-she is often the victim of abuse in different ways-if not in the act of battered women syndrome then in the act of her children being beaten.
    She (maoridom) is a woman in a culture that was colonised and bears the fruits of introduced patriarchy and structured masculinity and this cannot be the sole blame but it is part of the coal added to the fire that can either continue to be ignited by society or put out.

    The article is vague but the message is clear and the case of baby Nia is tragic and justice will be served in time.

  3. Cherie

    I think thats really positive move….last year in my study of law…before changing to study politics. A main focus of my study was legal systems & I looked into the option of having a separate justice system for Maori offending. My two Maori Lecturers spoke passionately on their desire to see focus on
    Maori needs being recognised in Court System. With my personal discussions with my lecturers/professors, I gained insight into what previously, I had been culturally unaware of. Maori have (historically) dealt with crime (within their whanau) effectively, through the Maori Way, which dealt with offenders and restored them back into Community. I think that its sad that we class a whole race (as we sterotype socio-demographics of people). I think that we need to acknowledge that solutions lie in Maori Hands & maybe a separate system of justice is needed? Does that mean that we deal lightly with some offenders based on race? No !!! But, I think that when were not respectful to listening to what Maori say they believe is needed in their communities. Then we run the risk of not dealing with root issues. I think their campaigns are a positive move to raising awareness of issues they consider important & hopefully future changes can be implemented in addressing needs for restorative justice and reduction of violence.

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