Te Mana Ākonga condemn transphobic hate speech post-Posie Parker visit
Recently Te Mana Ākonga released a public statement showing solidarity for the trans, takatāpui and rainbow communities in light of the arrival of anti-trans activist Kellie-Jay Keen, also known as Posie Parker, in Aotearoa.
The British activist was set to hold her first event in Auckland, when she was met with hundreds of counter-protestors at Albert Park, showing the multitudes who disagreed with her harmful views.
In collaboration with the kaiārahi of TMĀ which consists of Māori student associations from all universities, as well as NZUSA - New Zealand Union of Students’ Associations and the National Disabled Students’ Association, TMĀ released their public statement on March 28 condemning the events.
Addressing Posie Parker, Te Mana Ākonga stated that “we as Māori ākonga and rangatahi across the motu condemn your transphobic narratives and words. They are not welcome on this whenua.”
Further in the statement TMĀ expressed their huge disappointment in the government for allowing Posie Parker to enter Aotearoa, and the “silencing of Takatāpui voices”.
“Communities called to you about their feelings of being unsafe with Parker in NZ, and even after seeing the repercussions of Parker's visits across the world there was lack of action by the Government to listen and honor these voices.”
“We are enraged that more of our nation's leaders were not there to support our trans and rainbow communities. Where is the manaaki? Where is the aroha? Where is the concern for your nation's people?”
More broadly, TMĀ wanted to reaffirm their solidarity with “irawhiti, takatāpui, trans and rainbow whānau” in the face of ongoing and pre-existing discrimination those communities experience in Aotearoa.
“We stand with those across the country this past week, but also generations before and to come, who have protested and spread messages disagreeing with transphobic hate speech.”
Their message to the government is to do better at listening to the voices of the rainbow community, and empower them in order to see better change for the future.
Public Interest Journalism funded through NZ On Air.