29 Jan 2014

Forestry panel urged to consult Maori

8:42 pm on 29 January 2014

Forestry industry leader Victor Goldsmith is welcoming a major review into forestry deaths and urging the panel to consult with Maori.

An independent panel has launched a review into the high number of recent injuries and deaths in the sector.

The review's guidelines were discussed with groups such as the Forest Owners Association, Council of Trades Unions and government agencies.

Ngati Porou Whanui Forests director Victor Goldsmith says it appears Maori organisations have not been consulted and that needs to change.

Many Maori work in the industry, and iwi continue to receive Crown forestry licenses as part of Treaty of Waitangi settlements.

Maori are becoming more influential in the sector, and leaders want the review to be robust, Mr Goldsmith says.

The New Zealand Forest Owners' Association says the panel will decide how to run the review but Maori groups will be called on for input during the process.