< August 2019 newsletter

The campaign to implement UNDRIP continues

An associate professor at the University of Auckland Law School, Dr Claire Charters, is currently working on articles on the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UNDRIP), the relationship between tikanga Māori and the state legal system, tensions between human rights and indigenous peoples' rights and on the legitimacy of indigenous peoples' rights under international law, which will be published as a book by Cambridge University Press. 

In a talk to be given on August 27, she will be arguing that New Zealand needs a written constitution recognising iwi rangatiratanga and the rights of indigenous peoples in her talk ‘Why we need a constitution accommodating Māori rights’

When: 6:30 PM – 7:30 PM, AUGUST 27, 2019

Where: Little Creatures Summer Pop Up, 16 Fort Street, Auckland  View Map

This event is free. You can register here: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/why-we-need-a-constitution-accommodating-maori-rights-tickets-65091471343?aff=ebdssbdestsearch

Dr Charters’ primary area of research is in indigenous peoples’ rights in international and constitutional law. She has worked extensively on indigenous peoples' rights at an international level, including for the United Nations Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights and as an advisor to the United Nations President of the General Assembly.

Dr Charter’s other work includes:

  • “Use it or lose it: The value of using the declaration on the rights of indigenous peoples in Māori legal and political claims” (2017).
  • “Legitimising the state: Constitutional reform to recognise Rangatiratanga and Tikanga Māori”. A paper presented at New Zealand Law Commission Symposium, Wellington. 3 November 2016.

Calls by Māori for significant partnerships with the crown are intensifying.

Another academic who is pushing for major changes to our constitutional arrangements is Khylee Quince, who is director of Māori and Pacific Advancement at Auckland University of Technology. She bemoans a "lack of a true partnership relationship between Māori and the crown and the need for really significant change to our constitutional arrangements."

See WaateaNews: Constitutional change behind hīkoi call

Go back to the August 2019 newsletter



Towards the end of 2022 Democracy Action commissioned Professor James Allan, of the University of Queensland, to produce an analysis of the He Puapua Report  - a report that calls for highly controversial constitutional change. Specifically, we sought Professor Allan’s opinion on the implications for New Zealand’s liberal democracy in adopting recommendations made in He Puapua, and what this would mean for the future of New Zealand. Continue reading

'Others' not consulted on Declaration Plan

Photo: Andrew Little, Nanaia Mahuta, Jacinda Ardern, Kelvin Davis and David Parker at the 2018 National Iwi Chairs Forum. Alarm bells are ringing after Māori leaders expressed monumental ambitions during initial discussions with the Government about how to recognise the highly controversial United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UNDRIP). The Minister for Māori Development, Willie Jackson, says those discussions will shape the Government’s Declaration plan.  Continue reading

Minister Jackson working to adopt UNDRIP

The next step in the process to develop a plan for New Zealand to implement the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UNDRIP) was kicked off last month with a targeted engagement strategy aimed at ensuring as many Māori voices as possible get to share their views on what should be included in a Declaration plan. Continue reading

Plan underway to implement UNDRIP

The Ministry of Maori Development, is developing a plan to progress the implementation of the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples. Given the serious implications of this declaration, and the adoption of an engagement process with iwi, hapū and whānau, but not the wider community, the government needs to hear from us. Continue reading

Margaret Mutu pushing for implementation of UNDRIP

Margaret Mutu, current leader of the Iwi Chairs Forum, is pushing for the implementation of the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, (UNDRIP), claiming the Minister for Maori Development, Nanaia Mahuta, is supportive. See media release ‘Iwi Pleased with Government Decision to Develop a Plan of Action for Indigenous Rights’ and listen to a Waatea News interview with MUTU by clicking HERE Continue reading