Migrant Views New Zealand is a news portal of, by and for all migrants who have called this land their home – no matter how briefly. MVNZ is their platform to voice their views, engage in critical discussions, objective analysis and expert reviews of every little thing that shapes their lives.
WHO IS A MIGRANT?
According to UNHCR, more than 65 million people were displaced globally in 2016 – some forcibly and some at will. While the former are referred to as ‘refugees’, the latter are ‘migrants’.
These two terms are often used interchangeably to refer to people who are foreign by birth, by citizenship, or by their temporary or long-term stay in a new country. ‘Refugees’ flee “armed conflict or persecution” in their homeland to find sanctuary in another country (UNHCR).
In 2015, there were 21.3 million refugees worldwide. ‘Migrants’, on the other hand, “choose to move …mainly to improve their lives by finding work, or in some cases for education, family reunion” (Ibid.).
Unlike refugees, migrants can choose to return home and “continue to receive the protection of their government” (Ibid.).
In 2003, New Zealand’s population had for the first time soared to 4 million, assisted by immigrants. In October 2016, the country’s population was estimated at 4,727,000.
Migrant Views New Zealand aims to embrace the news, views and opinions of all these people, irrespective of the reason for their relocation to this country.
The colours of the logo have been derived from those of the Olympic rings, to represent inclusivity. Each one of us have something to say and together we form the migrant view.
To provide a balanced representation of all migrant communities in New Zealand media, so as to facilitate a well-informed and inclusive understanding of people who come from different countries and make this country their home.
To provide all the migrant communities with a platform to voice their experiences – the good, the bad and the ugly – that eventually helped them settle down in NZ and find a comfortable life. This would also enable mainstream New Zealanders to understand the migrant communities better. In other words, not only will the migrant communities participate in a cross-community conversation, but also make themselves heard and seen by mainstream communities.
There is a gap in media representation of the varied multicultural communities that reside in NZ. MVNZ aims to fill up that void. The speed at which their numbers are multiplying, a platform for their representation would only strengthen these communities and facilitate their settling in process.
As per the 2013 Census, NZ, the largest ethnic communities after the Maori are as follows:
- The Chinese population soared by 16 per cent, moving the current figure to 171,000.
- The Indian population went up by 48 per cent, with the current figure at 155,000 plus.
- The Filipinos have doubled to 40,000.
In 2016, the number of Chinese grew by 10,100, the number of Indians by 11,300, followed by the Filipinos at 49,00.
An advisory board, representing the diversity of cultures that form the New Zealand society, will steer the project, with Dr Paula Ray at the helm of its day-to-day functioning.