NZ Herald apologises over Reo blunder

By Ripeka Timutimu, Talisa Kupenga

The NZ Herald has apologised to Te Atarangi Whiu after refusing to print a memorial notice entirely in te reo earlier this week.

The statement from Neil Jackson, the Herald's General Commercial Manager for Auckland & Northland. says, "This situation is highly regrettable and the New Zealand Herald apologises for any offence caused. It is an outdated policy related to languages which are not English, which we are currently reviewing and will rectify immediately in relation to Te Reo. We have spoken to the customer and apologised to her personally. We recognise and respect Te Reo is the language of our people and the Herald is championing Māori Language Week but we have let ourselves down in this instance." 

Te Kāea broke the story last night where the newspaper told Whiu it would publish the piece if she translated it, and as per its policy, the unwanted translation would be printed alongside her notice and the extra space required would be at her cost.

“I disagreed with that because for my family and me, te reo māori is our first language. It is also the language of this land. It’s a nationally recognised language under NZ law.,” says Ms Whiu.

Following the discussions between Whiu and the NZ Herald, she approached fellow NZME newspaper, the Bay of Plenty Times.

She says they had no problems and printed the notice entirely in Māori.