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Ed Sheeran

Treaty education still vital

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A treaty educator says complacency about explaining the Treaty of Waitangi to New Zealanders could undermine treaty settlements.

Veronica Tawhai studied treaty education here and overseas for her doctoral thesis, and found it stressful work with a high burn out rate.

But she says it’s vital work, especially with settlements that envisage new relationships between iwi and crown and public agencies.

Instead institutions assume that settlements mean the government has fixed everything.

"Even after we have the settlements, the why of what happened is still going to be crucial to our decision making and to our common understanding as to what happened in this country, what are some of the causes of the problems we continue to face, which treaty settlements may or may not help," Ms Tawhai says,

She says if people don’t understand the reason for settlements, they can become hostile to Maori aspirations.


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