Stuff’s public apology for its portrayal of Māori was a startling admission that creates a wider conversation on race in New Zealand media, says 1 NEWS Māori affairs reporter Yvonne Tahana .
The apology came after an investigation carried out by 20 of Stuff’s own journalists.
On 1 NEWS this evening, Tahana spoke about the apology and what it means for the industry.
“It was a startling admission and apology today, but I think what it really does is it focus attention on the wider media eco-system.
“If Stuff can accept its racism what about Mediaworks, TVNZ, RNZ, the big players. We contacted all of them today and some of them were talking about hiring more Māori journalists in their newsroom.
"Well Māori journalists can’t do all of the heavy lifting. For core fundamental change you need our Pākehā colleagues and friends to come onboard - and that’s a massive challenge for the whole industry," Tahana said.
The Stuff project, Tā Mātou Pono | Our Truth, led by Pou Tiaki editor Carmen Parahi and editorial director Mark Stevens, shines a light on the way the media organisation has been racist in its past and contributed to stigma, marginalisation and stereotypes of Māori.
"It's been very difficult to know the findings of this investigation reflect on me as well, as a reporter and Māori woman," Parahi said in a statement this morning.
"One of the reasons for doing this is so my kids don’t have to carry the pain we, as Māori, have carried for so long because of the way we’ve been portrayed in the media over three centuries.
"This day of reckoning is a long time coming and the beginning of better representation in our reporting of all people in Aotearoa New Zealand."