Achieving equity of Pacific mental health and wellbeing outcomes

Achieving equity of Pacific mental health and wellbeing outcomes report cover. Green cover with white wording.This report and data infographic bring together insights about Pacific peoples wellbeing using our He Ara Oranga Wellbeing Outcomes Framework along with engagement with Pacific communities.  Released 23 May 2024. 

Pacific community leaders told us that the ‘Pacific dream’ is about thriving Pacific families in Aotearoa. However, it is clear from our assessment of the data and experience of Pacific people we spoke to, both for migrants and generations born here, that this dream has not been fully realised.

Many Pacific peoples are finding Aotearoa less welcoming, less understanding, with less access to the things they need to live well – factors that impact mental health and wellbeing.  Across almost every measure of mental health and wellbeing, Pacific people face greater challenges than the rest of the population. The evidence shows Pacific people are experiencing inequities in mental health outcomes. Despite these challenges, however, Pacific peoples rate their family wellbeing higher than non-Pacific people.  

We heard from Pacific leaders what potential solutions they see to realise the ‘Pacific dream’, to strengthen wellbeing in a meaningful way, and to achieve greater intergenerational wellbeing.

Action is needed to support wellbeing and realise the potential and ambitions of Pacific communities, with a particular focus on:

  • supporting Pacific families to achieve their goals;
  • accessing education and employment as pathways to future wellbeing; and
  • addressing barriers to housing and income, which limit present and future wellbeing.  

Addressing the many inequities we noted will be successful when the potential in Pacific communities, Pacific knowledge, and Pacific ways of providing wellbeing is unlocked. Pacific communities are already implementing local solutions, often alongside government, to address many of the interrelated barriers to wellbeing, but support and resources are needed to address the barriers to wellbeing they face.