Job losses expected amid Maori Television restructure

Job losses expected amid Maori Television restructure

Māori Television has confirmed a proposed restructure of its production and programming departments, which is expected to result in job losses and redundancies.

In a statement to Newshub, a spokesperson for Māori Television said the company is consulting with affected staff and expects the process to be complete by the end of November.

The news comes following a recent announcement by Māori Television to relocate the station's headquarters from its current location in Newmarket to a new building in East Tāmaki.

That decision was the focus of much debate in recent years with a push to relocate the broadcaster to Rotorua in the Bay of Plenty.

"They were reassured once again that their jobs were safe and that there would be a relatively seamless transition into the new premise," Tāmaki Makaurau MP Peeni Henare said. 

"Now they're being told in a pretty abrupt meeting and quite matter of fact that there will be a restructure, that people will be let go, and redundancies will be offered where they can be.

"Staff morale has been extremely's been so low that I was prompted to say some time ago that the mauri (life force) is sick at Māori Television, that it's really beaten, and this is just another blow to many of the kaimahi (staff) who have given years and years of service." 

Māori Television's Head of Content Mike Rehu says his department has built an audience-centric content-strategy supporting the television service's strategic objectives.

"We are proposing a structure that can more effectively implement the content strategy, effectively drive audience growth and better streamline decision making processes."

But Labour MP Peeni Henare has criticised the leadership at Māori Television and says it needs to front-foot the issue.  

"They're not leading Māori Television with everybody on board...The catch cry at the beginning was 'Mā tātou - it was for everybody' and yet it would appear that the majority of people are being left in the dark by the leadership."

Māori Television has not commented on how many jobs may be affected.