Key documents

The following documents could be explored with a group or class of students, either as a precursor to participating in the Speech Awards or Hui or as a stand-alone learning activity.


2019 Speech topic – Speaking for Justice, Working for Unity


About this document

The speech topic is the core content for next year’s Speech Awards and Hui. Students making speeches need to address the questions in the speech topic and make use of a related quote or whakataukī (either one of those in the document or a relevant quote from their own cultural or religious tradition). The Race Unity Hui will also focus on this topic, exploring key concepts such as unity, justice, polarisation and free speech through sessions and workshops.

Potential uses

  • This document will be studied by individuals and groups of students entering the Speech Awards as they prepare their speeches.

  • An additional step could be to discuss the questions in the speech topic as a class to identify some key views that the class shares. Students from the class who participate in the Speech Awards could incorporate the class’s views into their speeches, representing their peers at a regional (and potentially national) level.

  • It would also be useful for students to study the speech topic if they are planning to attend a Race Unity Hui.

  • Students in media studies, drama or visual arts could create a video clip, skit or piece to explore one or more of the questions in the speech topic.

Download (English)

Download (te reo Māori)



2018 Conference Statement – Race, Unity and Justice


About this document

Last year’s National Race Unity Hui (then called the Race Unity Conference) explored a similar theme to this year’s speech topic – the relationship between race, unity and justice. The ‘Conference Statement’ above was prepared to reflect views shared by youth during small group discussions at the Hui. The document was shared with members of the media, government and civil society as an example of the sorts of views youth hold on race relations issues.

Potential uses

  • Students participating in the Speech Awards may find it useful to study this document to stimulate their thinking and get an idea of what is already being said about race, unity and justice.

  • Studying this document may also help students understand the purpose of the Race Unity Hui. Students may be motivated by understanding that their participation in a Hui may help shape a similar ‘conference statement’ in 2019.



Big Diff: Beautiful diversity and ugly prejudice in Auckland

About this document

This is an online long-form news article published by on the topic of ethnic diversity and racial prejudice in Auckland. It includes both video content and a written article. The article explores the experiences of a range of young New Zealanders living in Auckland and their concerns about racism.

Potential uses

  • This article could be studied by a class as a way of understanding others’ experiences of race and ethnic diversity.

  • The article could also be used as an entry point for a discussion of class members’ own experiences of race and ethnic diversity.

  • Media analysis techniques may also help students reflect critically and constructively on the article. For example, students could reflect on how the article and video are intended to affect the reader/viewer, and what film and writing techniques are used to achieve this.


‘Koia Mārika — So it is’, Tāmati Kruger, Bruce Jesson Memorial Lecture 2017

About this document

This is a lecture given by Tūhoe leader Tāmati Kruger in 2017. Tāmati was instrumental in a ground-breaking Treaty settlement that recognised Te Urewera as a legal entity not owned by any human being. We see Tāmati’s work as relevant to race unity because it has helped address a significant injustice and heal deep-seated divisions between Tūhoe and the Crown. The extract below may be a useful perspective on ‘race unity’ to explore with students. [AM1] 


So, here we are as a country, we’re kind of awkwardly fudging, searching, wanting to know who we are.

Some Tūhoe think that in the distant future, there may no longer be Europeans living in Aotearoa, because Europeans live in Europe. That, maybe, in a long distance, the only people you find in Aotearoa are tangata whenua, you and I tangata whenua — because we love the land equally. We have a commitment to it. We believe we are from the land, we will live with it, and we don’t really think that we need to own it.

So Tūhoe’s view is that one day, all of us in this room are going to be tangata whenua, and we’ll all sit down and talk about those Europeans in Europe, and how they’re mucking up the world, and they need our advice.

Maybe this difficult journey that Tūhoe is making, and that you will witness over the next 40 years, this difficulty that we will undergo, this pain that we will undergo, will produce a liberation for you, and for Aotearoa.

That we come to understand that culture and identity are just other words for what we share in common. That’s all it is, it’s just another word for that. And that is what we’re struggling with — understanding what it is we share in common.

And when we do not share in common, philosophy and ideology, and our kinship to each other and to this land — we dare not go into details like hokey pokey, and gumboots, singlets, football, and harbour bridges, or any kind of bridge would work. Maybe we should start thinking about these things. And let’s help each other reflect with that struggle and that disruption. And let’s not try and avoid it.

We kind of think that that might be a long view of our contribution to Aotearoa and to all New Zealanders.

Potential uses

  • Students participating in the Speech Awards or Hui may benefit from reading and discussing part of Tāmati’s lecture.

  • Some of the ideas in the lecture may be challenging or unfamiliar for students. Students may benefit from identifying elements of the text that they understand and don’t understand, and exploring the more difficult ideas in discussion with their teacher and peers.


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