Creating and maintaining equal employment opportunities for Maori at Victoria University of Wellington

Wanda Korndorffer
Vol 10, Number 1, p.1
Two years ago, I was appointed as the first Equal Employment Opportunities Officer in a New Zealand university. My primary task was to develop and implement an equal employment opportunities (EEO) policy and programme for the university that would meet the requirements of the Universities Amendment Act legislation on EEO. This legislation, which initially came into force on 30 March 1988, required New Zealand universities to be \"good employers\" in terms of all of their staff, but, particularly, in regard to the employment of targeted groups: women, Maori, ethnic or minority groups, and those with disabilities. While the legislation targets different groups that are seen to be disadvantaged in their employment opportunities in tertiary education, the specific focus of my recent overseas study leave was the development of bicultural and multicultural climates and programmes in universities. In particular, how do universities meet their equity goals with regard to the employment of members of minority ethnic groups and indigenous peoples given that this is a process which: (1) requires the university to encourage actively members of these target groups to meet standards of excellence set by a different, dominant culture; and, (2) requires the university to change its own culture to include positively the cultures of members of the target groups? The remainder of this paper will address this question at the level of practice, that is, how do we do it?