Te Ohu Whakawhanauga, a new community alliance for Auckland

A huge turnout for the launch of Te Ohu Whakawhanaunga

Te Ohu Whakawhanaunga Tāmaki Makaurau is a new community alliance based in Auckland. Te Ohu Tāmaki brings together unions, community organisations, and faith based groups around shared campaigns for a just society. The current priorities for the alliance are decent work, better housing, and fairness for migrants.

More than 500 people from 48 organisations, including E tū, came together to launch the alliance in September and to challenge the leaders of political parties to commit to building 1000 units of public housing a year during the next term. National, Labour, and the Greens said yes.

Dina Timu, an E tū delegate and security guard in Waitakere, spoke at the launch about the importance of decent work. Because she works for the Ministry of Social Development, she gets the Living Wage of $26 per hour.

Dinah Timu

I am so grateful to my union and the Living Wage Movement for campaigning for more than 10 years for the Living Wage,” Dinah said at the launch.

“Even though I am above the Living Wage at my MSD job, the cost of living is so high now. Sometimes my children go without healthy food, or I get behind on bills. Every week, I can only put $30 in petrol for my car after I have paid all my bills. When I run out of petrol, I walk to work.”

Dinah also works as a bouncer on the weekends, a job with real risks.

“I love the people I work with but the job is not safe. A colleague of mine had a gun pointed at his head. Earlier this year, I got attacked by a male client at work. And I was only allowed two days off to recover, which is not enough.

“Every worker is entitled to a job that has a decent income, stable employment, gives them a voice, and is in a quality work environment. This is what decent work means.”

E tū will join with its allies in Te Ohu Tāmaki to fight for real commitments to transform the lives of working people in Aotearoa’s biggest city, Auckland.

You can learn more about Te Ohu Whakawhanaunga and get involved by visiting www.teohu.community.