Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | Video | Questions Of the Day | Search


Bill for students & beneficiaries defeated by Govt

16 August 2000

Bill for students and beneficiaries defeated by Govt.

A Green Party bill that would have reinstated the Community Wage for students over the summer break was voted down by the Government on its first reading this evening.

Sue Bradford's Social Security (Work Testing and Community Wage) Amendment Bill would have axed Work for the Dole, removed the 13 week stand-down period before a worker can qualify for a benefit and reinstated the Community Wage Student that the National Government cut during the last term.

The only other party in parliament that supported Ms Bradford's bill being forwarded to Select Committee for further consideration and debate was New Zealand First. The vote was 108 to 12 against the bill.

"While I realise that some aspects of my bill have been addressed by this new Government - such as moves to halt Work for the Dole - the Green Party is extremely disappointed that Labour and the Alliance chose not to support this bill," said Ms Bradford.

"I realise some of the aspects of my bill would have had budget ramifications but at least if it had gone to select committee some long overdue work on some of these key areas could have begun," she said.

Ms Bradford said that despite the Government's loud protests over the axing of the Community Wage Student while in opposition, their failure to take action when in Government had been very disappointing.

"National's removal of the Community Wage Student has had a massive impact on student poverty. It is unfair, highly discriminatory and totally unrealistic for students up to 25 years of age to be dependent on their parents for income during the break between academic years," she said.

"However this summer break it looks as though one of the nastiest pieces of National's work will once again severely disadvantage thousands of tertiary students, despite Labour's promises."

Ms Bradford said she was also saddened that the Government had passed up the opportunity to address the 13 week stand down period for workers to receive benefits. She said this stand down had resulted in massive increases in personal grievance cases from employees and had left many ex-workers destitute.

"We admit that this bill is not perfect and some of the measures would have cost money. However these issues need to be addressed and, by voting it through to select committee, we could have had these debates. Mr Maharey seems to be saying that he would like to do what my bill sets out but that it would be expensive.

"We hope the students and beneficiaries who helped elect Labour and the Alliance keep the pressure on them over the issues raised by my bill. The Green Party is happy to work with these groups to strive for the removal of the glaring inequities and injustices present in the current benefit system," said Ms Bradford.

Sue Bradford MP: 04 470 6720, 025 243 4239; Jonathan Hill (press sec.): 04 470 6719, 021 110 1133

© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines


Breed Laws Don’t Work: Vets On New National Dog Control Plan

It is pleasing therefore to see Louise Upston Associate Minister for Local Government calling for a comprehensive solution... However, relying on breed specific laws to manage dog aggression will not work. More>>


Corrections Corrected: Supreme Court Rules On Release Dates

Corrections has always followed the lawful rulings of the Court in its calculation of sentence release dates. On four previous occasions, the Court of Appeal had upheld Corrections’ practices in calculating pre-sentence detention. More>>


Not Waiting On Select Committee: Green Party Releases Medically-Assisted Dying Policy

“Adults with a terminal illness should have the right to choose a medically assisted death,” Green Party health spokesperson Kevin Hague said. “The Green Party does not support extending assisted dying to people who aren't terminally ill because we can’t be confident that this won't further marginalise the lives of people with disabilities." More>>


General Election Review: Changes To Electoral Act Introduced

More effective systems in polling places and earlier counting of advanced votes are on their way through proposed changes to our electoral laws, Justice Minister Amy Adams says. More>>

Gordon Campbell: On Our Posturing At The UN

In New York, Key basically took an old May 2 Washington Post article written by Barack Obama, recycled it back to the Americans, and still scored headlines here at home… We’ve had a double serving of this kind of comfort food. More>>


Treaty Settlements: Bills Delayed As NZ First Pulls Support

Ngāruahine, Te Atiawa and Taranaki are reeling today as they learnt that the third and final readings of each Iwi’s Historical Treaty Settlement Bills scheduled for this Friday, have been put in jeopardy by the actions of NZ First. More>>


Gordon Campbell: On The Damage De-Regulation Is Doing To Fisheries And Education, Plus Kate Tempest

Our faith in the benign workings of the market – and of the light-handed regulation that goes with it – has had a body count. Back in 1992, the free market friendly Health Safety and Employment Act gutted the labour inspectorate and turned forestry, mining and other workplace sites into death traps, long before the Pike River disaster. More>>

Get More From Scoop



Search Scoop  
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news