Council pushes for reo Māori in 'fabric' of capital

10:39 am on 17 November 2017

Wellington City Council has proposed a new reo Māori policy which intends to make the language more visible around the city.

Wellington City Council - yellow sticker (earthquake risk)

The Wellington City Council offices. Photo: RNZ / Teresa Cowie

It follows a commitment made by Mayor Justin Lester during te wiki o te reo Māori to incorporate te reo in the daily lives of Wellingtonians.

Deputy mayor Jill Day, who is leading the proposal, said the council already had some ideas around how the policy would look.

"It was instigated from talking about our signage and how we would like to have bilingual signage in Wellington city but we wanted to make sure that this policy wasn't limited to signage only.

"We want to see it expressed in our city through art, through theatre, street art - all sorts of different ways."

Ms Day said the council would officially invite feedback about the policy from the Wellington community on Waitangi Day next year.

She said the people of Wellington should decide for themselves where they would like to see the language used in their city.

"We want to see it through everything we do so it becomes the cultural fabric of our city and we want the community to give us that feedback so that what we're building is representative of what people have dreams for."

Ms Day said the policy was dedicated in the name of the council's cultural advisor, Billie Tait Jones, who passed away earlier this month.

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