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Report on Diversity in the Intelligence Agencies Welcomed, Findings Deplored

Media Release   I   11 January 2016

Multicultural New Zealand welcomes the review of diversity in the NZ intelligence community, and is “disappointed but not surprised” at the lack of awareness or recognition of cultural diversity in the agencies.
“We beg to differ that because Maori and Pacific people come from open, honest, trusting families and communities they cannot carry out the type of work done by the agencies and that the necessary secrecy could be a barrier to recruitment. It is also patronizing for the review to generalize that security clearances are an issue with ethnic minorities having a higher showing in crime statistics.” Says MNZ Executive Director Tayo Agunlejika.
“As highlighted in our own recent report on "Our Multicultural Future", minority groups continue to experience significant discrimination in employment and in the public arena, and they are under-represented in government agencies at both the national and local level. A similar study should be carried out in other government agencies, not just the Intelligence agencies.”
“All government agencies should have an ethnic relations strategy such as that adopted by the NZ Police and the one currently in preparation by Plunket New Zealand.  This would help in making recruitment more attractive to ethnic minorities and more effective in reaching them. It would also help government agencies to engage with ethnic communities to provide more equitable access to public services.”


Multicultural NZ: Federation of Multicultural Councils Inc. is a national organisation with 18 constituent regional multicultural councils throughout New Zealand and national councils for women, youth, seniors and business.  We offer a national collective voice for ethnic, migrant and refugee communities and provide advice to government and civil society on multicultural policy and practice. We work in partnership with other national organisations and foster collaboration to promote cultural diversity. We deliver a range of programmes including multicultural education and training, multicultural sports, settlement support programmes, youth activities and community capacity building. We have a record of 26 years’ successful service to the community.

For further information please contact Tayo Agunlejika, Executive Director on 04 9169177 or email


Report on Diversity in the Intelligence Agencies Welcomed, Findings Deplored

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