Council signs Welcoming Communities’ Statement of Commitment

Published on 14 September 2023

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A significant milestone in our dedication to inclusivity and harmony was reached in Upper Hutt as part of Te Wiki o Manaaki Welcoming Week 2023. Last Wednesday, Mayor Wayne Guppy, and Council’s Interim Chief Executive, Kate Thomson, signed the Welcoming Communities’ Statement of Commitment.  

Councillors and staff were present to witness the event, along with representatives from Ōrongomai Marae, and Upper Hutt Multicultural Council. The signing of the statement underlines Upper Hutt’s commitment and dedication to building bridges between cultures and creating a community where everyone—regardless of their background—feels welcomed, respected, and valued.  

The Welcoming Communities initiative is spearheaded by Immigration New Zealand. It aims to bring together local government councils and communities to make newcomers in the city feel welcome so that they are likely to enjoy better social outcomes, and stronger economic growth.  

“Our city, with its rich blend of cultures and backgrounds, stands as a testament to the power of unity in diversity,” said Mayor Guppy. “We want to continue to foster mutual understanding and build stronger connections and deeper belonging among New Zealanders—particularly long-time residents and newcomers.” 

“Through the signing of this commitment, we acknowledge and embrace the fact that our differences are our greatest asset,” said Council’s interim Chief Executive, Kate Thomson. “It's through diversity that innovation and creativity thrive, setting the backdrop for our community to do the same.” 

The signing ceremony was one of several events supporting Te Wiki o Manaaki or Welcoming Week which ran between 1 September and 10 September this year. 

Council thanks all residents who have taken part in events held across Upper Hutt and extends a warm welcome to newcomers to Upper Hutt.