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Māori academics call for national inquiry into racism at New Zealand universities

November 20, 2020

Original Article: https://www.theguardian.com/world/2020/sep/24/maori-academics-call-for-national-inquiry-into-racism-at-new-zealand-universities

Margaret Mutu is a Māori studies professor at Auckland University and said institutional racism against students and teachers, and in the curriculum and the way it is delivered, has beleaguered the sector for decades.

“There has always been resistance to including anything Māori,” Mutu said.

“Especially those aspects of Māori knowledge and scholarship that may challenge the applicability of Eurocentric knowledge and scholarship to Māori and our world views.”

Thirty-seven Māori academics from eight New Zealand universities have now signed an open-letter to education minister Chris Hipkins calling for a government-led national inquiry into the problem.

The letter alleges the crown has failed “to protect Māori staff and students in universities and, consequently, [has failed] to uphold the principles of te Tiriti o Waitangi.”

“We call for a nationwide review of the university tertiary sector for the purpose of committing to, and accelerating with urgency, a tertiary sector that honours te Tiriti o Waitangi. We call for this nation-wide review to commence now with urgency.”

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