As a nation we need to consider the highest levels of manaakitanga and protection of whakapapa in our response to COVID-19. This means adapting our practises during this extraordinary time.
Bereaved families and whānau from all cultures and backgrounds will find this time challenging. This makes it even more important that we show each other kindness and caring, manaakitanga and aroha.
Already, iwi and hapū have been adapting tikanga and kawa to keep our people safe. This has also extended to tangihanga.
There are now strict rules put in place during Alert Level 4 for when loved ones have passed away. These rules apply to everyone, every culture, every religion.
We support the advice and guidelines shared by Te Rōpū Whakakaupapa Urutā (The National Māori Pandemic Group) on tīkanga, hui and tangihanga for Alert Level 4 – this means no formal tangihanga until further notice. For Māori this means:
• no public funeral services whatsoever
• no tangihanga at our marae, funeral homes, churches and other venues
• no private whānau tangihanga at home.
WHY? Because COVID-19 is now in the community and public gatherings put all our whānau members at risk, especially our kaumātua and kuia. Therefore, we must protect people’s health and ensure our health system can look after New Zealanders who become sick.
For more information on tangihanga at Alert Level 4, visit Ministry of Health’s website for their comprehensive information on tangihanga, or review Te Puni Kōkiri’s key messages here:tpk-official-tangihanga-key-messages
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