Māori in the NZ military have experienced high casualty rates, fewer promotions and have received less compensation for their service.
That's according to Tāmaki Legal who plans to take the matter to the Waitangi Tribunal.
Tamaki Legal lawyer, Barney Tupara says, “Chief Judge Wilson Isaac has urged the claimants to look into the negative impacts this has had on the families of Māori war veterans.”
“While here at Tāmaki Legal, our director Darrell Naden from the East Coast has pushed for us to address the lack of support from the Crown.”
According to the law, the Tribunal has to investigate any claimed breach which includes failing to protect Māori from discrimination in service and from the effects of combat.
“What the Crown did was wrong. They haven't upheld their responsibility to protect Māori. When they returned, many had no financial support, some lost family members, and others returned with serious illnesses,” says Mr Tupara.
The new claim has been encouraged by the Tribunal for the Military Veterans Inquiry (Wai 2500).
Mr Tupara says, “Last week, we celebrated the opening of a new war museum for the C Company veterans but there's a huge difference between celebrating and addressing the past wrongs of the Crown.”
Tāmaki Legal will be holding an information hui this coming Monday at the Māngere War Memorial Hall to inform the public about the upcoming inquiry.