Cost of living in Auckland discourages northern Maori youth.

Labours Associate Affairs spokesman Rino Tirikatene is concerned Maori youth in the Far North feel discouraged from pursuing academic qualifications in Auckland because of the cost of such under-graduate courses and the cost of living in general.

“The fact of the matter is, those courses have always been expensive to attend. Runanga and Urban Authorities need to come up with more creative ways of ensuring our nieces and nephews up North and on the Coast as well, realize their hopes, dreams, and aspirations, because this National Government won’t.”

My Mum is Ngati Hine from Otiria, so I know about the jobless North, and how damaging it is upon the health and wealth of our whanau. Money is tight everywhere, even more so up North and the thought of families taking on big debt is scaring them into pursuing lesser goals and dreams, and that doesn’t please me”.

He also responded to Dr George Laking of the Maori Medical Practitioners Associations’ comments regarding the cost of living in Auckland.

“Dr Laking is absolutely right. The city is perversely expensive and way beyond the means of poor families up north who have to deal with their own problems, without having to worry about their kids down in the big smoke.
And yet my parents’ generation had no problems in coming to the big city from their rural communities. They stayed in Church or Government run hostels like Pendennis or Berkley House in Wellington. Maybe tribal and urban authorities can band together and invest in accommodation for their rangatahi. Sort of a northern Pan-Tribal Hostel to lessen the cost for these kids. Good for whanaungatanga as well.

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