NZ lacking diversity in leadership

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A new study has found a lack of ethnic diversity in New Zealand’s leadership table, despite the country being one of the most ethnically diverse countries in the world.

Kiwis rank senior leadership diversity as the number one area in need of improvement, according to a survey by the New Zealand Federation of Multicultural Councils. “The leadership across government, business and the education sector, is not seen as representative of today’s multicultural society and this is holding us back,” said Eric Chuah, founder of Cultural Connections.

Respondents came from a number of ethnic backgrounds throughout New Zealand. Some 24% were locally-born Kiwis, and 76% were born overseas.

“[B]y and large, New Zealand is a very welcoming society and migrants feel they are able to participate and succeed when they come to New Zealand,” said Tayo Agunlejika, executive director of Multicultural New Zealand.

But a recent survey by the Ministry of Business Innovation and Employment found that Kiwis feel the country is less welcoming to migrants now (76%) than in 2011 (82%).

“We can and must do better in understanding the challenges and barriers for migrants in being able to participate fully in New Zealand society and to recognize their economic, social and cultural rights,” said Race Relations Commissioner Susan Devoy.

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