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More jobs are the answer to welfare dependency

More jobs are the answer to welfare dependency

National's concern about welfare dependency is a positive change from its position in government between 1990 and 1999 when welfare dependency rose, but they still need to address the key issues of job creation, cheaper education and more training, said Matt Robson, Progressive Deputy Leader.

"As National thinks its way through these issues I am confident it will come to the conclusion of the Labour Progressive coalition - namely that the critical task for government agencies is to facilitate job creation and to invest in assisting people move into employment, training or education," Matt Robson said.

The coalition is committed to job creation, making work pay, investing in people and building intelligent partnerships within the community to facilitate job opportunities.

"National lives with the legacy of overseeing - while Bill English sat at the Cabinet table - a rise in welfare dependency. They must face up to the challenge to find beneficiaries real jobs or training opportunities and not take the easy ACT Party stance of offering knee-jerk attacks on beneficiaries and their children," Matt Robson said.

"In 1990, when National came to power, the number on benefits was 309,157. By 1999, after nine years of National-led government, there were 386,886. Today, after less than four years of a Clark - Anderton coalition, the number on benefits has dropped back down to 346,571.

"National voted against job creation when it voted against the introduction of both the Ministry of Economic Development and Industry New Zealand. If they want to see significant further reductions in benefit numbers, and many more in jobs and training they need to get on board with job creation," Matt Robson said.

"The most important policy to reduce welfare dependency is to get people into jobs, education or training," he added.

* Number of benefits quoted uses Total Beneficiaries less Superannuitants, Transitional Retirement and Veterans.

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