Altus Enterprises helps people with disabilities find jobs

By Wepiha Te Kanawa

Altus Enterprises is the largest employer of disabled people in Auckland with around 200 people working at their Māngere factory.  Over the past 50 years, Altus has seen an increase in Māori and Pacific workers. 

One Ngāpuhi employee says if it wasn't for Altus, he would struggle to find a job.  

Okio Haretuku says, “If I didn't have this job I'd probably be out there making petty cash like window wiping or something like that.  But that’s not for me. I like to get out there and do something better and get more education on other things.”

Mr Haretuku didn't have the easiest start to life.  “My right side doesn't function too well. When I was a baby I had a few strokes. That's the reason I'm here," he says.

But it's his 2-year-old boy who keeps him motivated.  “I enjoy this job.  If I go out to other jobs I don't know what they will think about me and what they will do," says Haretuku.

Adam Wilson has worked in the company for 33 years and suffers from a mental disability.  Adam says this place is like home.

“I love it, love the job, love the company, keep on working and this is the only place where you can come to, to do the job and not muck around.”

Altus is expanding and moving to a larger location to accommodate for more workers and more clients.