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Huaketo Korona (COVID-19)



Unite against COVID-19, together we can slow the spread.

covid19.govt.nz

Last updated Thursday 9 April 2020.

Aotearoa is currently at ‘Level 4’ alert for COVID-19. Kia mataara e te iwi!

RĀHUI: TE RĀ TEKAU MĀ ONO

Whānau support.

Ōrākei Health.

Whānau Hub.

Tangihanga.

Key Information

NWŌ Tangihanga Guidelines.

COVID-19 Advice for Māori.

Mental Health Foundation.

Ministry of Health.

Unite against COVID-19.

Work and Income.

Healthline.

Financial Support.

Our communication lines are still open.

Call our friendly team on 0508 NW Ōrākei (0508 6967 2534).

Email us at info@nwo.iwi.nz

COVID-19 Whānau Survey

Ngāti Whātua Ōrākei is reaching out to our whānau to see how we may help you keep well during the Covid-19 event.
Please help us by filling out a survey for your household.

Click here to complete survey

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Click for NWŌ Whai Maia  Facebook & Instagram. NWŌ Trust Facebook.

Stay connected – Click here to update your details.

Office Closures

Ngāti Whātua Ōrākei offices are closed until further notice, with all staff working from their homes at this time. However we encourage whānau to stay in touch and contact us by clicking the button below.

Contact Us

Frequently Asked Questions .

Can I leave my house during lockdown?

If you feel well you can leave your house to go to the bank or to your doctor, to buy essential products such as food, medical supplies, and essential appliances or to take some safe exercise in your local area.

Here’s a link to the Government’s safe shopping guide: https://covid19.govt.nz/help-and-advice/for-everyone/shopping-for-essentials/

If you feel unwell you must stay at home and ask others to pick up supplies for you or order essential products on-line. Call 0800NWOrakei (0800 6967 2534) if you need help.

FAQ as at 8 April 2020.

Can I go out for a walk?

Yes, if you feel well you can go for a walk, run or a gentle bike ride in your local area so long as you follow the Government requirements for social distancing (keep two metres away from anyone who is not in your household isolation bubble), try to avoid touching any surfaces such as park benches or rubbish bins, and wash and dry your hands properly as soon as you get home. All playgrounds are currently closed. If you feel unwell you must stay at home.

FAQ as at 8 April 2020.

Can I go out for other exercise?

Yes, so long as you feel well, follow the guidelines above for going for a walk, stay in your local area, and your exercise is safe so there is no chance that you will need help or to be rescued (so swimming, surfing, boating, hiking, mountain biking, hunting or any other potentially dangerous activities are off limits for now). If you feel unwell you must stay at home.

FAQ as at 8 April 2020.

Is Public transport still running?

Yes, you can still use taxis or public transport such as buses, trains, and ferries so long as you follow the rules about social distancing, avoid touching surfaces, and wash and dry your hands properly as soon as you get home – check with your local transport provider whether there have been any changes to their timetable or they have put in place any protocols you need to be aware of, we know many buses are requiring people to enter and exit through the rear doors. 

FAQ as at 8 April 2020.

What do I do if I’m unwell or can’t get out?

You can call your own doctor or the free Healthline (0800 358 5453) to ask if they can help with any health issues. You can also order essential products on-line for home delivery, ask others to pick up supplies for you, or call 0800NWOrakei (0800 6967 2534) if you need help.

FAQ as at 8 April 2020.

What do I do if I’m not safe at home?

If you or someone you know is in immediate danger call the Police on 111. Otherwise, call the sexual harm helpline on 0800 044334 or your local women’s refuge – call 0800 743 843 to get the number of your local refuge. You ARE allowed out of your household bubble to get to safety.

The Government has good information on who to contact for help: https://covid19.govt.nz/help-and-advice/for-everyone/family-violence-and-sexual-violence-prevention/

FAQ as at 8 April 2020.

What are the symptoms of the COVID-19 virus?

The symptoms include a cough, fever, shortness of breath, sneezing or a runny nose. These symptoms are also often a sign you have a cold of the common flu. This table, produced by the team at The Spinoff, is a useful guide to COVID-19 symptoms:

FAQ as at 8 April 2020.

What do I do if I think I have the virus?

If you are unwell with COVID-19 symptoms you should call your regular doctor or, if you don’t have a regular doctor, call the free Healthline on 0800 358 5453, and self-isolate. There is good guidance on self-isolation on the Government’s COVID-19 information website: https://covid19.govt.nz/help-and-advice/for-everyone/self-isolation-if-youre-unwell/

Call 111 immediately if you or someone in your household is having a medical emergency.

FAQ as at 8 April 2020.

How can I get a test for COVID-19?

You will only be tested for COVID-19 if you have the symptoms described above. If you do, call your regular doctor. If you don’t have a regular doctor, call the free Healthline on 0800 358 5453. Either your regular doctor or the Healthline will be able to give you a referral to a testing station for a test.

FAQ as at 8 April 2020.

Can I get a flu vaccine?

Yes, although priority groups will be given the vaccine first. Those groups are people aged 65 and over, pregnant women, people with a serious health condition such as severe asthma, diabetes, cancer, or heart disease, and young children with a history of severe respiratory illness. Essential workers will also be given priority. If you are in one of these priority groups, please get in touch with your usual healthcare provider in the first instance and follow any protocols they have in place. If you are not in one of the priority groups, please be patient and wait.

FAQ as at 8 April 2020.

Where can I get help if I’m struggling to cope?

Reach out to your regular support people such as family, friends or your Church elders and check out the awesome resources on the NWO Whānau Hub: https://ngatiwhatuaorakei.com/nwo-lockdown/. Otherwise, you can call or text 1737 for free, anytime (24/7) to talk with a trained counsellor.  There is good guidance on keeping mentally well on the Government’s COVID-19 information website: https://covid19.govt.nz/help-and-advice/for-everyone/looking-after-your-mental-health/

If you work, your employer may be part of the Employee Assistance Programme (EAP) which provides free counselling sessions for employees. Your employer will be able to provide you with their EAP details.

FAQ as at 8 April 2020.

What do I do if someone in my household dies?

Contact your funeral director for guidance and check the separate Ngāti Whātua Ōrākei tangihanga resource.

We have created a COVID-19 tangihanga resource to support our NWO Whānau should unfortunate circumstances occur. This resource provides guidance and will also equip you and your whānau to self-manage tangihanga with tikanga māori. We encourage you to read through the documents and discuss with your whānau. Click here to read more. 

FAQ as at 8 April 2020.

Do I have to pay my mortgage?

Yes, you still need to pay your mortgage unless your bank has agreed to give you a mortgage holiday: https://covid19.govt.nz/help-and-advice/for-everyone/renters-and-homeowners/

If you are unable to pay your mortgage you should ring your bank as soon as you can to ask for a mortgage holiday (noting interest will still accrue while on “holiday”) or to discuss a payment plan. It’s best to be honest with your bank about the situation and see if you can agree a payment plan.

You could also get in touch with budgeting services, Work and Income, or other agencies to see what support is available. You can call Work and Income on 0800 559 009 (Monday to Friday 7am–6pm, Saturday 8am – 1pm). For further information see their website: https://workandincome.govt.nz/eligibility/emergencies/2020/coronavirus.html#null

FAQ as at 8 April 2020.

Do I have to pay my rent?

Yes, you still need to pay your rent. If you are unable to pay your rent, you should ring your landlord as soon as you can to discuss a payment plan. Your landlord is not allowed to increase your rent during this period. https://covid19.govt.nz/help-and-advice/for-everyone/renters-and-homeowners/

It’s best to be honest with your landlord about the situation and see if you can agree a payment plan. If you do agree a plan, you may want to formalise it using the FastTrack resolution process: FastTrack resolution process.

You could also get in touch with budgeting services, Work and Income, or other agencies to see what support is available. You can call Work and Income on 0800 559 009 (Monday to Friday 7am–6pm, Saturday 8am – 1pm). For further information see their website: https://workandincome.govt.nz/eligibility/emergencies/2020/coronavirus.html#null

FAQ as at 8 April 2020.

Can I be evicted?

No, you cannot be evicted during this time, but you must continue to comply with the obligations of your tenancy agreement. Until June 25 (unless extended by the Government), your landlord may only terminate your tenancy for certain specific reasons – not paying your rent for 60 days (without putting an alternative plan in place), substantially damaging the property, or threatening or causing significant harm to your landlord or others.

It is still illegal for your landlord to discriminate against you as a tenant or prospective tenant when deciding whether to continue, extend, renew, amend or end your tenancy. Discrimination includes your landlord making any of these decisions on the basis of your race, nationality, or disability (including physical illnesses such as Covid-19).

FAQ as at 8 April 2020.

What if I live in a boarding house or a campground?

You must follow the protocols put in place by the boarding house or campground manager, these will likely require you to not use any shared facilities, or to use them on a roster to avoid the risk of infection through contact with others.

FAQ as at 8 April 2020.

What can I do if I am homeless?

Contact your usual shelter or support agencies for assistance, many are providing additional help to those who are homeless. Work and Income will be able to help if you need emergency housing, you can call them on 0800 559 009 (Monday to Friday 7am–6pm, Saturday 8am – 1pm). For further information see their website: https://workandincome.govt.nz/eligibility/emergencies/2020/coronavirus.html#null

Otherwise, call 0800NWOrakei (0800 6967 2534) if you can’t access the help you need.

FAQ as at 8 April 2020.

Information relating to Work/Employment

Check your employment agreement – your employment agreement and the usual employment law rules still apply.

The Government’s Employment website is the best place to go for up to date advice on your obligations and rights as an employee: https://www.employment.govt.nz/leave-and-holidays/other-types-of-leave/coronavirus-workplace/

If you need financial support, contact Work and Income for support: https://workandincome.govt.nz/eligibility/emergencies/2020/coronavirus.html#null

See the section below for business owners for information on the wage subsidy. If your employer is accessing the wage subsidy, its details will be published: https://www.msd.govt.nz/about-msd-and-our-work/newsroom/2020/covid-19/covid-19-wage-subsidy-employer-search.html. If in doubt, get legal advice.

FAQ as at 8 April 2020.

What do I do if I’ve lost my job?

Contact Work and Income as soon as you can to talk about whether you are eligible for a benefit or other assistance. You can call Work and Income on 0800 559 009 (Monday to Friday 7am–6pm, Saturday 8am – 1pm). For further information see their website: https://workandincome.govt.nz/eligibility/emergencies/2020/coronavirus.html#null

You could also get in touch with budgeting services, your Church, and other support agencies for further help or call 0800NWOrakei (0800 6967 2534) if you need emergency help.

Finder also has some useful guidance on what to do if you’ve lost your job:

FAQ as at 8 April 2020.

Can my employer make me come into work?

Yes, but only if you are carrying out tasks related to essential services and it is safe for you to come into work. However, if you can’t or won’t work remotely, you employer is not obliged to pay you (but must pay if it is receiving the wage subsidy). Your employee has to pay you sick leave as usual if you are sick.

FAQ as at 8 April 2020.

Does my employer have to pay me?

Yes, any changes or reductions to hours, tasks or pay outside your employment agreement need to be agreed with you and recorded in writing. If you can’t agree, your employer must go through a fair and proper process to restructure your hours or tasks in consultation with you.

FAQ as at 8 April 2020.

Can my employer make me take annual leave?

Yes, but only if you have accrued the leave (check your payslip) and only if they give you two weeks’ notice. You can agree another arrangement with your employer, but you must treat each other with good faith.

Your employer can’t force you to take leave if it is receiving the Government’s wage subsidy for you.

FAQ as at 8 April 2020.

Can my employer make me redundant?

Yes, but only if they follow the usual proper process which requires them to consult with you before making a decision.

FAQ as at 8 April 2020.

Can my employer fire me or force me to resign?

Not, they can’t force you to resign and they can only fire you for the usual reasons.

FAQ as at 8 April 2020.

Information relating to Business Owners

The Government’s Employment website is the best place to go for up to date advice on your obligations and rights as an employer: https://www.employment.govt.nz/leave-and-holidays/other-types-of-leave/coronavirus-workplace/

You can talk to Work and Income for advice by calling their Employer Line on 0800 778 008 or checking out their employer support services online:

https://www.workandincome.govt.nz/eligibility/emergencies/2020/coronavirus.html#null

FAQ as at 8 April 2020.

Business Mentors are offering FREE mentoring services to businesses during the COVID-19: https://www.businessmentors.org.nz/

You can also access business advice through Manaaki: https://www.manaaki.io/

If in doubt, get legal advice.

How can I work out if I’m an essential service?

You’ll need to regularly check the both the government guidelines and reliable news sources (such as RNZ) on what is an essential service, these guidelines are updated nearly every day as the government responds to feedback about what should be considered essential: https://covid19.govt.nz/government-actions/covid-19-alert-level/essential-businesses/

FAQ as at 8 April 2020.

Can I still operate if I’m not an essential service?

Yes, but you must close your premises and only operate your business if all your kaimahi can safely work remotely.

FAQ as at 8 April 2020.

If I am an essential service, what are my obligations around continuing to operate?

Even if you are an essential service, you can only operate if you can comply with the Government’s guidelines for safe operation which aim to:

  • minimise personal interactions amongst kaimahi, customers, and others;
  • ensure all appropriate health hygiene and safety measures are in place; and
  • restrict activity to only what is essential during the Alert Level 4 period.

Although you can decide how to best to achieve these requirements. You must not operate if you can’t meet them. The Government has set out some guidance on these requirements: https://covid19.govt.nz/government-actions/covid-19-alert-level/essential-businesses/

Business in some industries are required to register with the Ministry for Primary Industries: https://www.mpi.govt.nz/covid-19-essential-primary-sector-service-registration/ or the Ministry for Business, Innovation, and Employment before operating (call 0800 22 66 57 or email essential@mbie.govt.nz) for continuing to operate.

FAQ as at 8 April 2020.

How can I access the wage subsidies?

Work and Income’s wage subsidy page is the best place to go for information about the wage subsidy scheme: https://workandincome.govt.nz/products/a-z-benefits/covid-19-support.html#null.

You’ll need to regularly check back with the site and other reliable news sources (such as RNZ) to keep up to date with any changes.

The wage subsidy scheme is available to all businesses (including the self-employed, contractors and sole traders), registered charities, incorporated societies and post settlement governance entities. It may also be used by employers who recently let kaimahi go because of COVID-19, provided they re-hire those kaimahi.

Check if the Work and Income website to see if your business qualifies for the scheme: https://workandincome.govt.nz/products/a-z-benefits/covid-19-support.html#null

Employers accessing the scheme must undertake to use ‘best endeavours’ (this is a high bar) to pay kaimahi 80% of their pre-Covid-19 income. If you are not undertaking any business activity whatsoever due to the shutdown and your kaimahi are not working any hours, you must pay the whole value of the wage subsidy to each affected worker named on the application.

If a kaimahi’s income is normally less than the subsidy, you can pay them their normal salary. You must use any difference for the wages of other affected kaimahi – the wage subsidy is designed to keep your kaimahi in employment.

The wage subsidy is paid as a lump sum and covers 12 weeks per employee at a flat rate of:

  • $585.80 for people working 20 hours or more per week (full-time rate)
  • $350.00 for people working less than 20 hours per week (part-time rate).

Your details will be published if you claim the wage subsidy for any kaimahi: https://www.msd.govt.nz/about-msd-and-our-work/newsroom/2020/covid-19/covid-19-wage-subsidy-employer-search.html

FAQ as at 8 April 2020.

Is there any other government support available for businesses?

Yes, the Government has set up the Business Finance Guarantee Scheme in partnership with some banks to provide loans (either new or increases to existing loan limits) for small – medium business. The Government will guarantee 80% of the risk of the loans. Check the Government’s website for more information on the loans and on your business’ eligibility: https://www.business.govt.nz/covid-19/business-finance-support-and-mortgage-holidays/#e-20794

Small – medium businesses can also access a 6-month loan repayment holiday from their banks, for more information check the Government’s website: https://www.business.govt.nz/covid-19/business-finance-support-and-mortgage-holidays/#e-20800.

FAQ as at 8 April 2020.

Do I have health and safety obligations to kaimahi if they’re working from home?

Yes, you still have the usual health and safety obligations to your kaimahi while they are working remotely.

FAQ as at 8 April 2020.

How can I make sure my premises are secure during lockdown?

Security, including for non-essential business places, is an essential service so you can access security services so long as they comply with the Government’s requirements for operating.

FAQ as at 8 April 2020.