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Parents Slack, With Ministerial Approval

Parents Slack, With Ministerial Approval

Thursday 27 Mar 2003 Dr Muriel Newman Press Releases -- Social Welfare

ACT New Zealand Social Welfare Spokesman Dr Muriel Newman today attacked Social Services and Employment Minister Steve Maharey for allowing more and more women to collude with the fathers of their children to rip off taxpayers.

"Answers to my Parliamentary Questions show that the number of women on the DPB who could not - or would not - name the father of their children is now at a record high of 16,498, up from 13,996 when Mr Maharey became Minister," Dr Newman said.

"That means an estimated loss of more than $11 million in lost child support payments, for more than 32,000 children, each and every year.

"Since becoming Minister, Mr Maharey has done nothing to sort this out. In effect, he is stealing these children's right to know who their father is, and burdening taxpayers by making them support children which are not their own.

"It is unacceptable that children are being denied a father by collusion with the State. ACT believes that the Government must send a strong, sharp signal, that mothers and fathers will be required to accept full responsibility for supporting their children, by denying the DPB to those who refuse to name the father - except in special circumstances.

"The Minister must realise that knowledge of one's father's identity is not a privilege, it is a fundamental right - a right that the State must protect," Dr Newman said.


For more information visit ACT online at http://www.act.org.nz or contact the ACT Parliamentary Office at act@parliament.govt.nz.

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