Media release: 20 November 2012
Auckland Transport has taken two major prizes at the Maori Language Awards run by the Maori Language Commission, Te Taura Whiri i te Reo Maori, held in Tauranga.
It won the New Entrant Award Te Wiki o te Reo Maori – Te Maia Hou and then went on to scoop the Supreme Award Te Tohu Huia Te Reo. There were 30 finalists in 15 categories.
The Auckland Transport campaign for Maori Language Week saw posters in trains showing how to pronounce Maori vowels and station names correctly. An associated video, featuring Auckland Transport’s Maori Relations Manager Tipa Compain was used as an in-house staff training tool and for train and bus staff.
Over the course of the week there were also welcome boards in Maori at the Britomart Transport Centre and on-board train announcements were made in both Te Reo and English..
The Maori Language Commission’s Chief Executive Glenis Philip-Barbara says:
“(Auckland Transport’s) active support for the Māori language is a powerful demonstration of what is needed all over Aotearoa.”
David Warburton, Auckland Transport’s Chief Executive says the initiative is an example of the organisation’s commitment to Treaty of Waitangi obligations and Maori outcomes set out in the Auckland Plan. The feedback from customers, particularly through social media such as twitter and Facebook was also overwhelmingly positive.
“This year’s effort and the Award recognition is fantastic and something we can really build on moving forward,” he says.
Auckland Transport’s commitment doesn’t stop with Maori Language Week; it has just launched a road safety book for pre-schoolers in Maori and six Pacific Island languages and is in the process of rolling out the AT HOP card which has a Maori language option on electronic ticket machines.
Information brochures and newsletters are also often produced for specific audiences in a range of languages including Chinese and Korean.