Waatea News Column: Open borders = more vulnerable whānau at risk


Let’s be very clear, the political Right are demanding ‘freedom’ once NZ hits 80% vaccination.

We know from the modelling that at 80% with the freedoms ACT, ZB talkback hosts, NZ Herald columnists & National are screaming for will result in 7000 deaths and tens of thousands of hospitalizations.

That image above clearly shows where Covid will hit the hardest. In poor brown houses across this country, the ‘freedoms’ called for by the Right will be paid in lives lost by our Māori and Pacifika communities alongside poor white people.

The poor will pay the price for the impatience of the wealthy and while the stress of lockdowns builds, the Right will flip this on Māori and Pacifika people and blame them!!!

We have allowed kindness and civic duty to survive Covid, we can not lose all we have sacrificed for because right-wing pundits and politicians manipulate our frustrations.

We started Covid together and for it to be meaningful we have to finish it together. We must continue with restrictions until all our whanau are at 90% and then consider what happens next once we are there.

Our concern first and foremost is the people, the people, the people not Capitalism, Capitalism, Capitalism!

Opening at 80% would be a crime.

TDB Recommends NewzEngine.com

First published on Waatea News.


  1. https://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/covid-19-delta-outbreak-further-36-million-funding-for-maori-health-providers-pandemic-response-announced/57ERCJSB6SKANWVJFK2RYY3XSM/

    Follow the money – where did it go? Time to put on the adult pants and ask what groups’ did with this funding given the horrendous vax rates for Maori. That is a crap load of money and I’d hate to think it has gone into salaries and woke advertising and not ‘shots on the ground’.

    There needs to be accountability around Maori vaxx rates as opposed to woke racist chants. Otherwise there is going to be one hell of a anti Maori backlash if the balance of Auckland remains in a “Sobibor with picnics” state over summer.

    • Frank the Tank you are so correct where has the money gone?
      Someone should explain but I’m not holding my breath.

  2. Though the media, government agencies and various others like to group Maori and Pasifika together so often, the above graphic shows that when it comes to the vaccine rollout, Maori and Pasifika are distinct from each other rather than a homogeneous group. The Pacific and the European/Other groups are closer to each other than they are to any other group, and looking on the MOH vaccination website, the uptake for the Pacific group has generally been very good compared to the national averages. Considering that the Pacific demographic has a age distribution that is skewed towards younger age groups, a lot would not been able to be vaccinated until their age-bands became eligible recently, thus giving the Pacific group a later “start” in the rollout.

    Some of the media reporting is creating a perception of Pacific people that may be not only untrue, but unfair.

    • Agree DX5, I think Pacifica have done brilliantly and I am absolutely certain that the difference in Take Up amongst younger Maori comes from Maori Anti Establishment feeling. There has been such a rejection of all things representing the colonisers that it is having a very negative effect.

      Pacifica face the same issues but they have a great sense of community, they have an effortless pride in themselves and their culture and between their religious and cultural beliefs, they have a fabulous blueprint for effective communality.

      Maori has lost much of that, you will find the same things existing in small communities in the east cape and far North. But given what we are facing, it is time for Maori leaders to step up their game. Governments can always do better but after all the money that has been spent, its time we looked at the root cause of this hesitancy. It is not ignorance or poverty or generalised mistrust (Pacifica are effectively in the same space as Maori in this regard and they have done heaps better) but it is a lack of community and connectedness and deeply held anti establishment feelings. Elders, politicians and influencers need to get out in their own community and tell them, if you dont get vaxxed, our whanau will die and you will be the reason.

  3. Those vaxx stats are reminiscent of school attendance and school grades in NZ:

    Asian > Whitey > Pasifika > Maori

    I just Kim Hill ask Debbie Ngarewa-Packer a very pertinent question this morning: “What have you done to lift Maori vaxx rates?”

  4. Why did this government with so many Maori in their cabinet not get the message out to the grass root Maori earlier on that they need to protect themselves and get vaccinated . To me it shows a divide and total lack of leadership . I can only imaging the noise these Maori Labour leaders would be making if National were in power and this poor vaccine level had occurred under their watch.
    How long can the country wait for the message to get through. Businesses are failing and need some light at the end of the tunnel they cannot wait forever.

  5. The hard fact is if you have leadership that espouses white man bad then a lot of their followers are not going to use white man medicine.

    The cruel fact is it’s only when covid gets out of control like in New South Wales and people face imminent death that they get vaccinated at a rate approaching 90%.

    Why is the target set for us to not care about the last 10%? Who will comprise that last 10%? Why isn’t the target 99%.

    • “The hard fact is if you have leadership that espouses white man bad then a lot of their followers are not going to use white man medicine.”

      You might be onto something there Joseph. I’m thinking of the teaching of “white privilege” in schools, and the so-called “Citizen’s Handbook”.

  6. I think those who are unvaccinated are putting us at risk so we need to pull out all stops and get them vaccinated.

  7. Doesn’t make sense to me why Maori won’t get vaccinated and then somehow that is the fault of right wing pundits?

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