Dame Tariana Turia presents award to Auahi Kore stalwart – Sue Taylor tonight

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Dame Tariana Turia presents award to Auahi Kore stalwart – Sue Taylor tonight

This year’s Tariana Turia Award for significant achievement in indigenous tobacco control, presented by Dame Tariana herself, has been awarded to Sue Taylor (Ngati Raukawa, Ngati Kahungunu) at the Oceania Tobacco Control Conference in Sydney this evening.

Sue Taylor received the award for her extensive and varied work undertaken within tobacco control over many years, from grass roots smoking cessation programmes to political advocacy.

“As a smokefree advocate, Sue was nominated for her long-time work within the Māori tobacco control sector. She lives the values, and for her the kaupapa and mahi always comes first. We are very pleased to see her receive this award,” says Mihi Blair, General Manager, National Tobacco Control, Hāpai te Hauora.

The award recognises significant contributions to reducing the impact of tobacco on indigenous populations within the Oceania region, due to the massive inequity in harm from smoking within these groups.

“Sue has played an important leadership role as a Māori public health advocate campaigning for equitable outcomes for Māori, alongside training and counselling hundreds of people in smoking cessation programmes,” says Shayne Nahu (Te Arawa, Tainui, Irish) Advocacy and Wellbeing Manager, Cancer Society of New Zealand.

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Involved with developing and implementing Māori tobacco control programmes and policies from the 1980's when the Aukati Kai Paipa (AKP) programme was formed, Sue Taylor was at the forefront of the successful AKP smoking cessation model. She was instrumental in training and co-ordination allowing AKP’s development across the country into Māori and Pasifika communities.

She played an important role as the chair of Te Reo Mārama, the Māori smokefree coalition, during that time working closely with the Māori Affairs Select Committee inquiry into the tobacco industry and the effects for Māori.

Her work has culminated in presenting to the Health Select Committee on the Smoke-free environments amendment bill (Prohibiting Smoking 

in Motor Vehicles Carrying Children), and co-ordinating input into this and the 2017 Oceania Tobacco Control Conference.

“I am honoured and humbled to receive this award, named after a significant wāhine Māori who has been fearless and vocal about a killer product of te iwi Māori. A product that was brought to Aotearoa by Captain Cook in 1769 and given as a koha when our tīpuna signed the Tiriti o Waitangi in 1840,” Sue Taylor says.

“Thank you to all those who nominated and provided attestations that resulted in receiving this award from the sponsors Hāpai te Hauora and the Cancer Society of New Zealand.

“Ngā mihi nunui ki ā koutou katoa.”

The Tariana Turia Award is for people/groups/organisations that display the following:

  • Significant contribution to achievement in indigenous tobacco control outcomes at a local, regional or international level that has had an impact at population level
  • Skills and success in generation and/or implementation of evidence, policies and public and political support for indigenous tobacco control needs
  • Persistence in the face of opposition and criticism with regards to indigenous people and their rights to a tobacco-free generation.

Sue Taylor was chosen from nominees across Oceania, by a panel of tobacco control advocates representing Australia, the Pacific Islands and New Zealand.

One of her referees said of her, “Sue Taylor carries many attributes of our Rangatira Whaea Dame Tariana Turia, such as courage to fight for fairness in an uneven playing field, her gentle yet stern manner and her strategic way of ensuring that the work gets done.”

“Ehara taku toa i te toa takitahi, engari he toa takitini.”

“Success is not the work of one, but the work of many.”