Mana Whenua Engagement Framework

PRESENTED BY: Jacqui Rolleston-Steed

As national reforms and strategies seek to redress Māori interests, there is a need for government agencies to consider how they engage equitably and meaningfully with hapū and iwi. In the least, government agencies should now have in place, and if not, be considering an internal engagement strategy that is not only fit for purpose but also builds iwi and hapū capability and capacity to participate.

In an ideal world, prior to mana whenua engagement, government agencies should come together to communicate what is in the policy and project pipeline to alleviate the proverbial ‘10 agency cars up the driveway’. Unfortunately, this has been an uncommon practise. Lack of cohesion and coherency amongst government agencies during the consultation process does little to allow mana whenua and iwi to engage meaningfully.

The Regional Public Service Commission’s role is to coordinate and align regional system leadership to deliver locally led initiatives that achieve better wellbeing outcomes and more coherent solutions. Government agencies are well positioned to provide equitable solutions for mana whenua that builds their capability and capacity not only during the engagement process, but throughout the duration of any project or policy process.