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Work for the dole no replacement for real jobs

Work for the dole no replacement for real jobs

The National Party is right to say that social welfare should be thought of as a temporary safety net for people between jobs and training - but work for the dole is no replacement for real jobs says Progressive Deputy Leader Matt Robson MP.

"Katherine Rich told Radio New Zealand this morning that she believed in the 'old' concept of welfare, where it is a safety net for the few. That is fine but it would be very rich to think that band-aid, work-for-the dole programmes and punitive time-limits on benefits are any kind of strategy to significantly lift all of our unemployed into high paying jobs.

"The architects of the old welfare net system established in the boom years after World War II could never have envisaged the massive changes to economic policy in the 1980s and 1990s.

"What New Zealand experienced in the 1980s and 1990s was an explosion in unemployment and welfare dependency. Roger Douglas and Richard Prebble in the 1980s, and National in the 1990s, oversaw mass unemployment become a social and economic norm," he added.

"The center-left coalition elected late in 1999 has achieved success at getting people into employment, but much more needs to be done to reverse the culture of failure of the past.

"Welfare dependency has fallen under the center-left coalition elected in 1999 because regional and economic development policies have facilitated a significant 132,000 rise in employment, but it isn't enough. There still aren't enough jobs for everyone who is out of work.

"Now that National and ACT recognise how good the policies of this coalition are, they should reflect on the bankruptcy of ‘work for the dole’ because that is a surrender strategy. Anyone who wants work- for- the- dole is giving up on creating jobs, Matt Robson MP said.

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