Bob McKee Workshop Puke Ariki 24th May – ‘War, Freedom and Respect.’

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Puke Ariki is holding a workshop on 24 May about War, Freedom and Respect and you are invited to take part. Our keynote speaker is Bob McKee, Chief Executive of CILIP, the UK professional body for libraries and librarians. Bob is a passionate defender of Freedom of Access to Information and Freedom of Expression (often abbreviated to FAIFE in library jargon). It is widely considered to be a fundamental principle for public libraries across the world.

One of the legacies of the Taranaki Wars is a sensitivity around knowledge and information held by Maori. For various reasons there is a reluctance to share some material with non-Maori. One of those reasons is the struggle that Maori have had, and some are still having, to resolve Treaty Settlement Claims in court. This workshop looks at the possibilities of improving the sharing of indigenous knowledge through public libraries. It will use Puke Ariki as a case study but the discussion may lead to better guidance for public library professionals throughout the world.

PukuArikiFWe would like you to join us at the workshop to discuss the following key question:

Is it desirable and feasible for public libraries in New Zealand to provide equal access to Maori and non-Maori knowledge and information for all citizens?

Public libraries across New Zealand are involved in the sensitive care of some of that knowledge and information belonging to Maori. In the late 20th century a breakthrough was made in providing professional and cultural support to Maori who worked in libraries throughout New Zealand. Te Ropu Whakahau was formed in 1992 as a special interest group of the Library and Information Association of New Zealand Aotearoa (LIANZA) and became an incorporated society in 1996. Te Ropu Whakahau helps to inform policies and practices relating to the care of Maori material in libraries and archives, and the provision of library and information services generally. We are delighted that Te Ropu Whakahau are supporting this workshop.

The National Library of New Zealand has a duty under the 2003 Act of collecting, preserving, and protecting documents, particularly those relating to New Zealand, and making them accessible for all the people of New Zealand, in a manner consistent with their status as documentary heritage and taonga. Were grateful to Penny Carnaby, Chief Executive of the National Library, for supporting this event and giving some of her valuable time to share her views at the workshop.

Space is limited so if you are interested in attending please contact Dale Cousens, Manager Service Delivery, Puke Ariki by e-mailing her at cousensd@npdc.govt.nzby the end of April. Participation is free of charge.

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