Māori Targeted Engagement

Last updated: Thursday, 30 June 2022 | Rāpare, 30 Pipiri, 2022

We delivered targeted engagement workshops on creating an Indigenous rights Declaration plan with our partners Pou Tikanga of the National Iwi Chairs Forum and Human Rights Commission representatives.

Workshops with tangata whenua on their aspirations for a draft Declaration plan ran from September 2021 to February 2022. These were mainly online and included a hui with national Māori organisations in October 2021.

We heard a range of views on what a draft Declaration plan should include and the process for drafting a plan for Aotearoa in partnership.

You can read the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples - Key themes from Māori targeted engagement April 2022.


Our aim was to identify potential actions to include in a draft Declaration plan, that will strengthen Indigenous rights. The workshops focussed on encouraging a range of views.

Inamata, onamata, anamata  

To help understand tangata whenua aspirations, an informal approach for targeted engagement centred around three key concepts:     

  1. Inamata: titiro whakamuri (looking back) – facilitators asked participants to think about their experiences of their right to self-determination / tino rangatiratanga, whenua, equality in Aotearoa, taonga, te reo Māori and culture
  2. Onamata: ināia tonu nei (the present) – facilitators asked participants to think about what challenges and opportunities Māori face in realising self-determination / tino rangatiratanga in accessing and looking after our lands, resources, culture and to achieving equality for our whānau   
  3. Anamata: titiro whakamua (looking forward) – facilitators asked participants to think about:
    1. what they would do to realise Māori rights to self-determination, lands, culture, and equality if they had control of all the resources in the world and the ability to make any decision for action; and
    2. what actions the government should take to support whānau, hapū and iwi realise and exercise their rights to self-determination, equality and rangatiratanga over whenua, taonga and culture

Online Workshops

Because of COVID-19 most targeted engagement workshops were held on-line. Prioritisation by Māori to respond to COVID-19 affected the ability of people to attend workshops.

Engaging with diverse Māori groups during targeted engagement was critical to understanding Māori priorities and expectations for the Declaration plan.

A group of 32 facilitators were trained to deliver the 90-minute online group session, which asked participants:

  • What is our experience with Indigenous rights and responsibilities?
  • What are some challenges and opportunities about Indigenous rights and responsibilities?
  • What actions should the Government prioritise to strengthen Indigenous rights and responsibilities?


A Declaration Plan in Aotearoa A5 booklet in Māori [PDF 1.5MB]
A Declaration Plan in Aotearoa A5 booklet in English [PDF 1.5MB]

UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples A3 poster in Māori [PDF 763KB]
UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples A3 poster in English [PDF 763KB]

UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples FAQs in Māori [PDF 761KB]
UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples FAQs in English [PDF 761KB]



Feedback from targeted engagement

Who have we engaged with?

Almost 70 workshops were held with a range of groups including tangata whaikaha Māori (disabled community), iwi/hapū, rangatahi, and sector groups like health and education.

Workshops primarily focused on collecting the views of whānau, iwi, significant Māori organisations and specific Māori communities. Participants came from varying backgrounds and represented a cross section of interests.

Download the targeted engagement summary

Download the targeted engagement summary in te reo Māori

Download the targeted engagement full report

Download the targeted engagement full report in te reo Māori

Key themes

The Declaration covers a broad range of rights and freedoms. The issues and aspirations raised during the workshops were extensive. These were grouped into 12 overarching themes:

  • tino rangatiratanga
  • participation in kāwanatanga
  • land, resources and the environment
  • education
  • provision of information about indigenous / Māori rights
  • health
  • justice
  • cultural expressions and identity
  • housing
  • equity and fairness
  • economic development and business
  • te oranga o te whānau

In addition to these themes, attendees shared their views on the process and structure for a Declaration plan and how it should be monitored.

The 12 themes should not be considered individually as there was a high degree of overlap between them when discussed in workshops. Importantly, strengthening the rangatiratanga of tangata whenua was the most consistent matter raised. It was discussed at every workshop and was at the heart of the issues raised by participants in their discussions ranging from health, justice and education, through to the protection of the taiao and te reo Māori.

Collation of data and analysis of information

Through targeted engagement, a wide range of Māori data was collected. This data will be cared for based on the mātauranga of Te Mana Raraunga – the Māori Data Sovereignty Network. These principles are consistent with the Declaration.


Cabinet paper

In April 2022 Cabinet received the Māori targeted engagement feedback and agreed the process for drafting a Declaration plan.

Cabinet paper - Update on the development of the Declaration Plan  

How to get involved

While targeted engagement was completed in early February, this is not the end of the process. Ongoing conversation will continue with a view to bringing everyone along on this journey and leading to wider consultation later this year.