A Kaupapa Māori conceptualization and efforts to address the needs of the growing precariat in Aotearoa New Zealand: A situated focus on Māori
In Aotearoa New Zealand, the precariat is populated by at least one in six New Zealanders, with Māori (Indigenous peoples) being over-represented within this emerging social class. For Māori, this socio-economic positioning reflects a colonial legacy spanning 150 years of economic and cultural subjugation, and intergenerational experiences of material, cultural and psychological insecurities. Relating our Kaupapa Māori approach (Māori cultural values and principles underlining research initiatives) to the precariat, this article also draws insights from existing scholarship on social class in psychology and Assemblage Theory in the social sciences to extend present conceptualizations of the Māori precariat. In keeping with the praxis orientation central to our approach, we consider three exemplars of how our research into Māori precarity is mobilized in efforts to inform public deliberations and government policies regarding poverty reduction, humanizing the welfare system and promoting decent work. Note: Aotearoa New Zealand has been popularized within the everyday lexicon of New Zealanders as a political statement of Indigenous rights for Māori.