Last year, the Government created a new agency - 'Māori Crown relations'. At the launch, Minister Kelvin Davis, announced that "The agency…will help facilitate the next step in the Treaty relationship – moving beyond the settlement of treaty grievances into what it means to work together in partnerships."
At the time Audrey Young (NZ Herald) reported that according to Davis' statement, the agency will have responsibility for developing a new engagement model between Māori the public sector. It will also provide leadership across the public sector on other matters "including the constitutional and institutional arrangements supporting partnerships between the Crown and Māori."
We are now seeing the fruits of this commitment to ensure the public sector engagement with Māori is ‘meaningful’ – with government agencies providing strategic direction on how they work with and respond to Māori as the Crown’s Treaty partner.
An engagement framework has been developed, which provides a nebulous sliding scale to assess engagement methods. The spectrum of engagement ranges from a commitment by the Crown to keep Māori informed, to empowering Māori to be the decision maker - with the Crown implementing the decisions made by Māori. See: Crown engagement with Maori
NZ Transport Agency to Partner with Māori
One example is the Transport Agency’s Maori Strategy “to provide strategic direction on how they work with and respond to Māori as the Crown’s Treaty partner, and what this means for how they do business.”
They have committed to work with Māori as partners to build strong, meaningful and enduring relationships to achieve mutually beneficial outcomes.
“We invest time and effort that reflects the importance of this partnership. Both Treaty partners benefit from working closely together, focusing on long-term outcomes and building strong and enduring relationships”.
See NZTA website: Māori and the Transport Agency