Ko Taupiri te maunga
Ko Waikato te awa
Ko Pootatau Te Wherowhero te tangata
He piko he taniwha
He piko he taniwha
Waikato taniwharau
Kia ora taatou!

My name is Kauri and I’ve recently come on board as the Young Workers Resouce Centre’s new Educator! I’m 20-years-old, born and raised in Kirikiriroa Hamilton, and currently completing a Bachelor of Social Sciences degree at The University of Waikato.

All my life, I have been an advocate for youth.

During my childhood, I took every opportunity to take charge and speak up for the things that I was passionate about. Today, I’m still deeply passionate about seeking equitable outcomes for young people.

I am so excited to be working with and for the YWRC – an organisation whose strategic vision and goals are so vital to the prosperity of youth in the workforce. So far, I’ve delivered a few of the YWRC’s all-important Employment Rights & Relationships workshops and in hearing many of the participants’ anecdotes, I have been very quickly reminded of the many situations in which I too have encountered the big “E” word that is exploitation.

“Whenever I work a three-hour shift, my manager doesn’t let me take a break. Can they do that?”

“I didn’t get a contract when I started my job. Is that all good?”

“When I started my job, I worked a ‘trial day’ and they didn’t pay me for it. Was that legal?”

The answer to all of those questions is “no”, and it’s my job to help other rangatahi to both recognise that and work towards an equitable remedy that will ensure their safety and enjoyment while at work.

I look forward to continuing to share the kaupapa of the Young Workers Resource Centre with other rangatahi across Aotearoa – to take the power into their own hands, speak up for themselves, and he the safe, healthy, and meaningful experiences they deserve in the workplace.

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