Inhumane treatment of Pasifika people must stop

New Pacific Affairs Minister Peseta Sam Lotu-Iiga must urgently address the inhumane treatment of Pasifika people by Government agencies, Labour’s Pacific Islands Affairs spokesperson Su’a William Sio says.

“There are deeply disturbing reports out today about the shocking treatment of pregnant Pasifika women by staff at Middlemore Hospital.

“One woman reported feeling judged for having babies at a young age, while another said she had to give birth in a linen cupboard. Yet another said she was asked to go home just four hours after giving birth because the hospital needed her bed.

“Meanwhile further alarming reports reveal that Tongan overstayers are being deported back to the most cyclone-ravaged parts of Tonga.

“Immigration New Zealand’s decision to deport overstayers back to the islands of Ha’apai where 5000 people were displaced and 800 homes destroyed, was described by lawyer Richard Small as ‘perverse’.

“Sam Lotu-Iiga must call a temporary halt on Immigration New Zealand deporting people to Ha'apai.

“The Minister must also ask urgent questions about the way Pasifika people are being treated by Government agencies.

“In particular, he must seek reassurances from district health boards that Pasifika people going to hospital are being treated with respect, not as second class citizens,” Su’a Williams Sio says.

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