Te Tai Tonga candidate for the Māori Party, Mei Reedy-Taare, is speaking out about Māori men’s health in her determination, both politically and personally, to do whatever it takes to get health on the agenda.
The launch, held last night at Te Wharewaka on Wellington Waterfront, is a great opportunity to focus attention on Māori men’s health.
“I want to congratulate Mana Tāne Ora o Aotearoa – the national Māori men’s health coalition – for their bold and proactive work in addressing the poorer life expectancy of Māori men,” said Mei Reedy-Taare.
“In doing so I acknowledge their board: Riki Niania; Tahi Takao; Steve Kenny and Te Kani Kingi; and the inspiration of Lee Luke in mobilising this movement of men to create intergenerational change.
“Currently there remains a significant gap – 7.3 years – between the life expectancy of a Māori male (73 years) and a non-Māori male (80.3 years). We believe that such inequalities cannot be tolerated or maintained.
“If we believe in notions of equity and social justice, we want to see measurable improvements in life expectancy, quality of life, morbidity and an overall reduction in inequalities for Māori men.
“The Māori Party is campaigning on the grounds of committing to eliminating poverty, disparity and inequality. We know that as a population, Māori men have, on average, the poorest health status of any ethnic group in New Zealand”.
“We welcome the move by Mana Tane Ora o Aotearoa to establish nationally networked strategies to address the health and social issues of Māori men in Aotearoa.
“The implementation of a sustainable set of health indicators is a brilliant means of focusing attention on the issue of Māori men’s health, and I look forward to seeing the way in which this tool can be used to generate discussion where it matters most.”
Authorised by Mei Reedy-Taare, 5 Gala St, Waihōpai