PSA Pasefika is a network to encourage the involvement of Pacific Island peoples in union activities and decisions.
Talofa lava, Malo e lelei, Ni Sa Bula Vinaka, Namaste, Kia Orana, Taloha ni, Ia Orana, Fakaalofa lahi atu, 'Alii, Malo Ni, Halo Olaketa, Mauri, Aloha mai e and Warm Pacific Greetings
Our Mission Statement:
To Develop, Strengthen and Influence Tangata Pasefika to champion our interests and celebrate our successes
The PSA Pasefika network was originally formed in 2005.
In 2019 we have a membership of 1,965 Pacific members who choose to belong to the network. Our members come from all over the Pacific and identify from the islands of: Fiji, Hawaii, Kiribati, Kuki Airani, Niue, Rotuma, Samoa, Tokelau, Tonga, Tuvalu and Uvea.There is an estimated 6,000 PSA members who identify as Pacific, and 258 delegates (15 of which are national delegates).
If you identify as a Pacific member and want to belong to the network, then you need to go into your membership details and join the network, or you can ring 0508 367 772 and someone can assist you from Te Roopu Tohutohu Manaaki, the PSA’s member advice and support centre.
The majority of members are based in Auckland followed by Wellington, with scatterings of other members throughout Aotearoa/NZ.
From our Corrections Hinango Māngai Māori and Vā Moana
Tongan Language Week 2021
Mālō e Lelei mo e talitali lelei kimoutolu kotoa pe ki he Uike ‘o e Lea faka-Tonga, neongo ‘a e faingata’a ‘o e mahaki ‘oku lolotonga mo’ua ai e fonua, faka’amu pe ‘oku malu mo hao homou ngaahi fāmili kotoa pe ‘i ‘api na.
Tonga language week Uike Kātoanga'i 'o e Lea Faka-Tonga, Sunday 5th September - Saturday 11th September 2021
The theme for Tonga language week is:
" Fakakoloa 'o Aotearoa 'aki 'a e Ako Lelei ".
" Enriching Aotearoa with Holistic Education ".
NZ Pacific Peoples ethnic group: Tongans are the third largest, making up 20.4% of the Pacific people’s population (20.4 percent or 60,333 people), behind Samoans 48.7% (144,138 people) and the Cook Islanders 20.9% (61,839 people).
The Kingdom of Tonga is also known as 'The Friendly Islands', it comprises 172 islands (36 inhabited; some coral and some volcanic, four with active volcanoes) and straddles the international date line. Tonga is lined in white beaches and coral reefs and covered with tropical rainforest.
PSA Pasefika encourage you to celebrate and participate in Tongan language week 2021 and given COVID-19 be creative on how you would do this. Be sure to share your celebratory stories, and photos with us by posting on the PSA Pasefika Facebook page or emailing email@example.com
We hope you have an enjoyable celebratory Tongan language week and in a time like this let’s lift our prayers and share our faith to enrich and empower Aotearoa.
‘Ofeina Manuel-Barbarich & Ulualofaiga Mareko
PSA Pasefika Co-Convenors
Welcome to Samoan Language Week 2021
Sunday 30 May - Saturday 5 June
THEME: Poupou le lotoifale. Ola manuia le anofale which means strengthen the posts of your house, for all to thrive
When you’re building a foundation for a fale (house) it can’t have a weak foundation or posts. This is the same for the foundations of our families, schools and churches that play an important role in strengthening Gagana Samoa (the Samoan Language). Language is important for the foundations of our overall wellbeing.
This year’s theme challenges us this year is to re-evaluate the perspectives of families, schools, churches, and the whole country to re-strengthen the inner self. When people are secure in their values, language, and customs, these form the compass for their journeys. The inner self and the core of any school, church, organisation, community, and country must reflect that of the people in it. Strengthening this core must reflect key aspects of a people’s lives. All these elements ground the foundation of wellness for anyone.
This is also a good reminder for us to reassess the post of our personal Fonofale: Model of Health by Fuimaono Karl Pulotu-Endemann
PSA Pasefika encourage you to celebrate and participate in Samoan language week 2021.
Be sure to share your celebratory stories, and photos with us by sending to: firstname.lastname@example.org
For more information about upcoming events visit: https://www.mpp.govt.nz/programmes/pacific-language-weeks/samoa-language-week-2021/
Welcome to Gasav Ne Fäeag Rotuạm Ta - Rotuman Language Week 2021
Sunday 9 May - Saturday 15 May
Languages magnify the value of a community, providing a vital link between our place in Aotearoa and our heritage and the Pasefika Komiti are excited about the beginning of Pacific Language Weeks.
Each Pacific Language Week is an opportunity to not only share and promote our unique cultures and encourage language retention, but it can also a vehicle to build cultural awareness and understanding, and we hope that you get behind the celebrations.
The Pacific Language Weeks programme
The Pacific Language Weeks programme is starting this year with the Gasav Ne Fäeag Rotuạm Ta - Rotuman Language Week 2021, this Sunday 9 May to Saturday 15 May.
This year’s theme for Gasav Ne Fäeag Rotuạm Ta - Rotuman Language Week is Tutur häk ne måür lelei – the four pillars of life and wellbeing:
- Måür Fak'ata (spiritual - a place of solace that gives meaning to life)
- Måür Fakforo (physical - living life in all its fullness)
- 'Os A'häe (psychological - steers our presence and place in life)
- Hạikạinagaga (social - our connection with people)
The traditional Rī Fak Rotuam is a Rotuman thatched shelter or house which needs four strong pillars to hold the entire house together, just like the four pillars for our wellbeing. The theme acknowledges and celebrates the strength and resilience of our Pacific communities during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Community activities and events will be held throughout Aotearoa to showcase the richness of the Rotuman language, culture and traditions. Some activities and events will also be available online on the official NZ Rotuman Language Week Facebook page. And, the Ministry for Pacific Peoples have great resources on their website that can support you with creative ideas to celebrate this week.
If you would like to showcase how you, your team or organisation celebrate Gasav Ne Fäeag Rotuạm Ta - Rotuman Language Week 2021, as part of our Rotuman Language Week Highlight, please share your story and pictures with us by 5pm Friday 14 May. You can email us your story and photos to: email@example.com. Ḁlalum 'ḁus 'e gasav ne fäeag rotuḁm te'is - May you be blessed, this week of the Rotuman Language
COVID-19 Update – Pacific Communities
Last week it was highlighted that members of our Pacific community had contracted Covid-19. It was made more visible when people who were at the Samoan Assembly of God Mangere were identified as a cluster.
Our people have yet again become the spotlight of this pandemic.
However, the positive actions carried out by our Pacific people to combat the Delta variant need to be commended. These include helping to :
- identify contacts
- trace locations of interest
- eliminate Covid from our people and our community
Unfortunately, there is the negative impact of being highlighted in a nationwide update and the ongoing impacts this has on our Pacific communities and those who come from neighbouring Pacific nations, whether it is our parents, grandparents, aunties, uncles, cousins, children or grandchildren.
It has been highlighted by our members that since the announcement our Pacific people started leaving lines to the supermarkets due to the discomfort of people staring or whispering racial comments, people declining to serve them as customers because of fear of catching Covid due to the colour of their skin, comments being circulated on social media around "overstayers" or "dumb coconuts" needing to get a test - just to mention a few incidents.
It has sent emotions and feelings into overdrive for us as Pacific people.
This was once again highlighted by the experience at the weekend with the Bay of Plenty DHB. For the purpose of what was happening there, the advice is very clear. There is no requirement for any person to provide ID when getting a COVID vaccination or test regardless of their nationality.
DO NOT underestimate the power we have as a people and as a community. We have continued to persevere and show resilience in times like these. Yes the comments and the dirty looks hurt us but it is through the humility, love and grace of God, that we can stand tall and take no notice of the noise being made.
For all our delegates across the PSA sectors, this is the time for you to ensure that our people, your members are supported within their workplaces, that there is awareness and understanding of what is currently happening to ensure the safety of our Pacific members, and to prevent any further harm to our people.
For all of our Auckland based members, our prayers and thoughts are with you all at this time as you continue to do your part to ensure that there is no further impact and loss of life for our families and communities. We understand that there is fear in the air with the uncertainty of your safety as anau, village, church and as Pacific people.
We urge that you continue to do what is natural to us, that being to keep our people safe, look after each other and carry out the measures required of us to ensure we are all part of the 5 million solution.
Please ensure you are visiting the following websites for the latest information
- Locations of Interest
- COVID-19 Testing Stations - Auckland
- Book your Vaccinations – Rest of New Zealand
For any of our members or your families and friends who may require financial assistance or support please follow the links below:
- Ministry of Social Development - https://www.workandincome.govt.nz/covid-19/index.html
- Positively Pacific - https://positivelypacific.org.nz/
- Pasifika Futures - http://pasifikafutures.co.nz/covid-19-support-packages/
- Support for Pacific Communities - https://www.mpp.govt.nz/covid-19/support-for-pacific-communities/
If you need support with an employment issue or would like to connect with any of the Pasefika Network Komiti please do not hesitate to either call the Organising Centre on 0508 367 772 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Alternatively you can call one of the following numbers:
- Need to talk – free call or txt 1737 anytime for support from a trained counsellor
- Youthline – free call 0800 376 633, free txt 234 or email email@example.com
- Skylight – call 0800 299 100 who help children, young people and their families through tough times of change, loss, trauma and grief
Otherwise continue to stay safe, keep strong and keep well as we continue to fight this pandemic.
Fa’afetai lava, Malo aupito, Vinaka Vakalevu, Meitaki Ma’ata, Fakafetai lahi lele, Fakaaue lahi and thank you
‘Ofeina Manuel-Barbarich Ulualofaiga Mareko
PSA PASEFIKA CO-CONVENORS
PSA Pasefika 2020 Congress Outcomes
- VĀ MOANA DELEGATE
- PACIFIC SECTOR REPRESENTATIVE
- EXECUTIVE BOARD REPRESENTATIVE
Talofa lava, Malo e lelei, Ni sa bula vinaka, Namaste, Kia orana, Taloha ni, Ia orana, Fakaalofa lahi atu, 'Alii, Malo ni, Halo Olaketa, Mauri, Aloha mai e and warm Pacific Greetings.
At our 2020 Congress the PSA Pasefika network put up motions to enshrine our Pacific voice within the PSA structures. This included the role of the Vā Moana delegate, Pacific Sector representation and Executive Board representation. All these motions were endorsed at Congress. Click here to read more.
Vā Moana Delegate JD
The Vā Moana Delegate provides a voice for Pacific members at the highest level of an enterprise/agency. This role is a vital way to connect the delegate structure of PSA in the enterprise/agency to issues that are of importance to Pacific members. Click here to read more.
Many long centuries ago our Pasefika ancestors migrated across and settled many islands and atolls contained within the largest water mass in the world, the Pacific Ocean. They traveled for thousands of kilometres discovering places near & far using and navigating using the stars, the moon, sea currents & tides, birds and ocean life to assist them.
"N.I.U FRONTIERS” tracks our journey as a network engaging with our members, the wider PSA network , our communities and to some degree will be a continuum of the curiosities, desires and risks our ancestors took when delving into the unknown.
N.I.U is an acronym of the following:
Now, New, Native, Network;
Indigenous, Innovative, Inspirational, Investment;
United, Universal & Understanding.
"N.I.U” provides life, sustenance, spiritual , forward and future thinking.
"FRONTIERS” evokes the realities of our people taking charge of our own steps/pathways going forward into the future. This would involve our people at the forefront raising the issues which are important to us & also in the background providing support. Our people would more importantly be at the helm of every “NIU Frontier” undertaken from all avenues ie. Operational and governance.
PSA Pasefika Network Working Party
Since August 2018 a small but dedicated working group has been working on behalf of the Pacific members from designing principles based on the PSA Rūnanga’s Ngā Kaupapa principles, Gender Pay Principles from a Pacific lens, future structure of the PSA Pasefika network, revitalising the Mission Statement and Intent and developing activities and initiatives that will ensure our Pacific members are engaging in our network. The working group is comprised of some hard-working dedicated workplace delegate volunteers who are primarily based in Auckland and Wellington. This work is normally carried once a month on a Saturday and the commitment from these delegates is immeasurable for the work that has been produced today on behalf of Pacific workers in the PSA and ensuring we have a presence and voice in the PSA.
We acknowledge all PSA Pasefika network members who were there from the very start in 2005 and are still here today. We also welcome new members and look forward to meeting everyone soon.
PSA Organiser’s: Duane Leo (Auckland) and Stella Teariki (Wellington) provide support and guidance for the network. We would like to thank them for their continual involvement.
We want to thank previous working party members for their contributions in the last 14 months: Lisah Hoponia-Pikula (Ministry of Social Development), Magele Maria Uluilelata (Statistics NZ), Malavai P-Misikei (Oranga Tamariki), Ofeina Manuel-Barbarich (Department of Internal Affairs), Poema Pekepo-Ford (Ministry of Social Development) and Tea Ngatama (Ministry of Social Development).
Current PSA Pasefika working party members are:
- Brian Palalagi (Co-Convenor, NZ Transport Agency)
- Ulualofaiga Mareko (Co-Convenor, Ministry of Justice)
- Timena Kiria (Oranga Tamariki), Jennifer Laulala (Ministry of Justice)
- Kahu Lousiale-Tahaafe (Department of Internal Affairs)
- Ᾱpeāfῡsia Katalina Semisi (Ministry of Social Development)
- Alice Meredith (Auckland City Council)
- Myles Hunkin (Health Alliance)
- Nia Bartley (Capital Coast District Health Board)
- Talanoa Manu (Waitemata District Health Board)
- Tania Siwatibau (Ministry of Health)
Other Network/Sector Involvement
PSA Women's Network
It is always pleasing to have our Pacific members become more involved in the PSA structures. For the PSA Women’s Network, PSA Pasefika have Kahu Lousiale-Tahaafe as their voice and representative to ensure there is the mandate from our network and therefore the Pacific voice in this forum. Other strong Pacific women include Jennifer Laulala who has recently become the Women’s network Co-Convenor for all women across the PSA and is also involved in the NZCTU Women’s Council, we also have Nia Bartley who is in the Women’s Network advocating on behalf of women from the District Health Boards. Great to see the growth of Pacific voices in this forum.
PSA Youth Network
Ulualofaiga Mareko has been elected as the Wellington Regional Youth Convenor.
PSA Eco Network
Ᾱpeāfῡsia Katalina Semisi and Tania Siwatibau have been endorsed as the PSA Pasefika representatives in the PSA Eco network. Nia Bartley is also part of the Eco network as a representative from the Women’s committee. Great to see such a fantastic Pacific presence at the Eco day of action.
NZ Council of Trade Unions
In July 2019 at the NZCTU Biennial Women’s Conference, PSA Organiser Stella Teariki received an award at the biennial for her outstanding service to union women. The other Pacific women recognised was our previous PSA Pasefika Convenor Lealamanu’a Caroline Mareko for her outstanding service to union women.
Pacific Enterprise National Delegates
Kahu Lousiale-Tahaafe is the Pacific Enterprise National Delegate for the Department of Internal Affairs.
Timena Kiria is the Pacific Enterprise National Delegate for Oranga Tamariki.
Leah Rees has just been elected to the Pacific Enterprise National Delegate role for MBIE.
Kahu Lousiale-Tahaafe is on the Public Service Sector Committee. Kahu will be responsible for not only reporting on union matters from Department of Internal Affairs she will need to liaise with delegates from Parliamentary Service, Office of the Clerk, Parliamentary Counsel, Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet, Controller and Auditor General, State Services Commission and Treasury as they are all part of a cluster with Department of Internal Affairs being the biggest cluster.
Ulualofaiga Mareko is on the Public Service Sector Committee representing Ministry of Justice.
Nia Bartley has been elected on to the District Health Board Sector Committee and represents the Nga Tai Kokiri (Area 3) Region.
SSC Mentoring program
Ᾱpeāfῡsia Katalina Semisi and Jennifer Laulala have been accepted into the State Services Sector Commission mentoring programme.
We are pleased to have another Pacific Island staff member join the PSA. Sio Kasipale has just been appointed to an organiser role in Auckland. Sio comes to the PSA with extensive union knowledge and highly engaged with other Pacific Komiti’s across the union movement. Our network is pleased to have the extra resource come on board to assist us with our work program.
Porirua City Council, Manager Public Outreach and Education, Pataka
How many languages do you speak, and what are they? English, Hawaiian, Hawaiian Pidgin and I speak 'food'.
Why did you join the union? My mother worked for a union in Hawai’i for many years. Since I was young, I saw how collective power in the workforce can shape businesses, commerce, and families.
Would you consider being a delegate? Sure, happy to offer my expertise where I can.
What skills / attributes would you say are required to be a delegate? Good listener, Cool under pressure and be able to lead with integrity.
What would be the achievements at the moment or any pressing issues of your workplace? Councillors have recently agreed to pay staff the Living Wage - that is cool. The council is there to serve our customers especially to get infrastructure in place but this is difficult when with a population of 54,000 in the region, only 18,000 pay rates. Porirua rate payers are amongst the highest rate payers in the country.
Do you think being Pacific would make a difference as a delegate? Absolutely. Representation is important.
What is your favourite kiwi dish and drink? Fish and chips and lemon/lime and bitters or milky white tea (Dilmah brand).
What is your favourite island dish and drink? Laulau (taro leaves filled with pork, beef, fish and bundled together) AND the quintessential Hawaiian drink 'Passionfruit Orange and Guava' juice)
How many Pacific islands have you visited and which was your favourite? 8; Hawai’i, Lana’i, Maui, Kaho'olawe, O’ahu, New Caledonia, North and South Islands (of Aotearoa/NZ); Te Ika a Maui (North Is).
Any unique or interesting talents you wish to share? Lomilomi Practitioner (Hawaiian Massage)
What do you enjoy about the PSA Pasefika network? Like that there are Pacific people who see the value of unions. We're stronger together.
How could it improve? Diversify
Any advice for current or future PSA Pasefika network members? Don’t step in to represent ALL 20,000+ islands in the Pacific, let alone the individual communities in them.
Advice for non-Pasefika PSA members about our network? Kāko’o – support.
Favourite karaoke song? I believe in the thing called love - The Darkness and Alone - Heart.
Final words of inspiration? If you are free, you need to free somebody else. If you have some power, then your job is to empower somebody else (Toni Morrison).
MERCY BROWN (Delegate)
Capital and Coast District Health Board, Pasefika Health Advisor
Why did you join the union? In 1987 I worked for the District Courts. I joined the PSA and became the PSA Convenor. I received a lot of training then and worked closely with the PSA organiser. I had a break and moved out of Wellington and worked with the Ministry of Education. When I returned to Wellington to take on a job with Mental Health, I took on the role of a PSA delegate and was also part of the Komiti Pasifika. I participated in marches to parliament and admired the noises that the cleaners would make during those marches.
What skills / attributes would you say are required to be a delegate? I guess anyone can be a delegate if they wish. I think commitment, honesty and a passion to empower members with training provided to do the role will be sufficient. I also think being a delegate means that person is able to speak up and is not afraid to raise issues with management
Do you think being Pacific would make a difference as a delegate? Yes. There are times when a Pacific member may need a Pacific PSA delegate for support and even query some of the jargon or even the agreement. I see my role as encouraging our Pacific people to seek help early and not to be afraid to raise issues. We are good workers that’s for sure!
What is your favourite kiwi dish and drink? Crayfish, kina, oysters, mussels and paua, cranberry juice, English tea, glass of Pinot Noir.
What is your favourite island dish and drink? Island dish: sua i’a with taro and palusami (fish with coconut cream and taro leaves) Drink: koko Samoa (real Samoan cocoa).
Any unique or interesting talents you wish to share? I am a Toastmaster therefore I am good at public speaking and organizing events. I have run workshops around Toastmasters. I facilitate “Incredible years parenting programmes”. I am a member of WOF Crossfit in Porirua. I like walking and hiking. Most of all I love family time and spending time with my grandchildren.
What do you enjoy about the PSA Pasefika network? It is good to see the younger ones coming through. They are our future voices!
How could it improve? I think encouraging new ones to come through is very important for the survival of the Komiti and its members. I wonder what will it look like if PSA Pasifika invest in a cultural Matua? Our unique Pacific culture is important and our values as union members are also important. Maybe have different representatives from different islands on the network and from different government agencies.
Any advice for current or future PSA Pasefika members? To be supportive of each other. Empower our people to participate and to speak up against bullying and speak out about our rights as union members andemployees or to speak up about pay issues etc.
Final words of inspiration? Being a delegate gave me the confidence to speak up. I learned a great deal from attending training, workshops and conventions. I met many delegates who share the same values of being in the union and what the union stands for. I have been supported by many and have learned from members who have shared their journey through being a delegate.
Pasefika in Pictures
Click on the links below to find out more about the Pasefika network:
- 210813-Newsletter-Porirua-Pacific-Festival-COVID-Vaccinations pdf | 221 KB | Last Changed: 16/08/2021 11:14am
- Porirua-Flyer-21st-August-Pacific-Festival-Event pdf | 684 KB | Last Changed: 16/08/2021 11:12am
- Tupu-Talanoa-PSA-Pasefika-Youth-Zoom-meeting pdf | 461 KB | Last Changed: 12/08/2021 1:20pm