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


$153 million package to get people into work

Hon Steve Maharey
Minister of Social Services and Employment

$153 million package to get people into work

Budget 2003 contains a $152.8 million package over four years to help people move into the paid workforce.

Social Services and Employment Minister Steve Maharey said the budget built on work in the Labour-led government’s three previous budgets to remove the barriers preventing people from taking up paid work, to actively match job seekers with job opportunities and to improve the information employers and job seekers have about skill and labour needs in the economy.

“Unemployment has been at historically low levels in New Zealand, leading to the emergence of skill and labour shortages. Employment initiatives in this budget continue our Future Directions welfare reform programme and focus on supporting people to move from benefits to paid work to help plug these gaps.

“The maximum number of subsidised childcare hours increases from 37 to 50 hours per week from 1 July, 2003 to improve the support to low-income parents taking up full time work.

“The income thresholds for Family Support and the Child Tax Credit are also being raised from 1 April, 2004 making this assistance available to more families.

“These measures, worth $59 million over four years, signal the government’s clear intention to make significant improvements to benefit and tax based family income assistance in the 2004 budget,” Steve Maharey said.

Other initiatives to assist groups who find it difficult to obtain employment are:
- $21.2 million to implement the Auckland Metropolitan Migrant and Refugee Strategy. This will involve developing and expanding specialised employment coaching programmes, multi-lingual services and skill development programmes. Moving greater numbers of migrants into work will greatly assist in meeting skill and labour shortages in the Auckland region. New funding of $894,000 will also improve access to English as a second language training for these job seekers;
- $52 million in reprioritised funding for Work and Income to better tailor training to job seekers to the needs of employers; and
- $4 million to promote to employers the employment potential of youth, mature and migrant job seekers.

“Funding of $1.5 million is allocated to the Department of Labour to work with industries and regions experiencing labour and skill shortages. And the Community Employment Organisations scheme, which had been a pilot, now has on-going funding over the next four years of $8.6 million.

“$5.7 million is being invested to improve information on the labour market. Internet-based resources, WorkSite and KiwiCareers, will be further developed; a survey will be conducted of technology use in the work place; and the long-term success of employment programmes will be evaluated.

“A range of measures is also planned to protect the integrity of the benefit system including new data matches and earlier intervention to prevent overpayments. Funding of $17.6 million has been allocated to establish this programme which is expected to generate savings of $55 million over the next four years,” Steve Maharey said.


© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines


Also, Loan Interest: Productivity Commission On Tertiary Education

Key recommendations include better quality control; making it easier for students to transfer between courses; abolishing University Entrance; enabling tertiary institutions to own and control their assets; making it easier for new providers to enter the system; and facilitating more and faster innovation by tertiary education providers... More>>


Higher Payments: Wellington Regional Council Becomes A Living Wage Employer

Councillor Sue Kedgley said she was delighted that the Wellington Regional Council unanimously adopted her motion to become a Living Wage employer, making it the first regional council in New Zealand to do so. More>>


Scoop Images:
Dame Patsy Reddy Sworn In As Governor-General

This morning Dame Patsy Reddy was sworn in as the New Zealand Realm’s 21st Governor-General. The ceremony began with a pōwhiri to welcome Dame Patsy and her husband Sir David Gascoigne to Parliament. More>>


Ruataniwha: DOC, Hawke's Bay Council Developer Take Supreme Court Appeal

The Department of Conservation and Hawke's Bay Regional Investment Company (HBRIC) are appealing to the Supreme Court over a conservation land swap which the Court of Appeal halted. More>>


With NZ's Marama Davidson: Women’s Flotilla Leaves Sicily – Heading For Gaza

Women representing 13 countries spanning five continents began their journey yesterday on Zaytouna-Oliva to the shores of Gaza, which has been under blockade since 2007. On board are a Nobel Peace Laureate, three parliamentarians, a decorated US diplomat, journalists, an Olympic athlete, and a physician. A list of the women with their background can be found here. More>>

Gordon Campbell: On The Key Style Of Crisis Management

At Monday’s post Cabinet press conference Key was in his finest wide- eyed “Problem? What problem?” mode. No, there wasn’t really a problem that top MPI officials had been at odds with each other over the meaning of the fisheries policy and how that policy should be pursued... More>>


Mt Roskill: Greens Will Not Stand In Likely Post-Goff By-Election

“The Green Party’s priority is changing the Government in 2017, and as part of that we’ve decided that we won’t stand a candidate in the probable Mt Roskill by-election... This decision shows the Memorandum of Understanding between Labour and the Green Party is working." More>>


Get More From Scoop



Search Scoop  
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news