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

 


Talking Tough Not Enough


Talking Tough Not Enough

ACT New Zealand Social Welfare Spokesman Dr Muriel Newman today called on Social Services and Employment Minister Steve Maharey to do more than just talk tough if he wants to fix the looming long-term unemployment problems.

"Since becoming Government, Labour has undermined the welfare system, axing Work for the Dole, scrapping work-testing for the DPB, and re-establishing the Sickness Benefit as standalone," Dr Newman said.

"On top of that, the Department of Work and Income has put its energy into helping those unemployed who are easily-placed, and not yet entrenched in welfare dependency. This Government is now talking tough, but that is not enough. To be effective, fundamental changes to our welfare system need to be made.

"In order to help people into jobs and ensure they are not left on the scrapheap, overseas experience shows that welfare programmes should mirror the workforce - requiring beneficiaries to attend 40-hour weeks of work, training or organised job search; docking benefits for those who arrive for work late, or don't turn up at all - all the while giving participants the habits and skills of the workplace.

"Work programmes are currently voluntary - beneficiaries do not have to stick with a job, or show up at all. There are now hundreds of employers around the country who cannot find workers for basic skilled jobs such as cleaning, horticulture or forestry.

"The Household Labour Force Survey will be released later this week, and will show that unemployment figures have worsened, thanks largely to fundamental changes to the welfare system - driven by Beneficiary Union demands - that the Minister has made.

"If Mr Maharey is to prevent a blow-out in unemployment numbers, he must urgently reform our welfare system. Initiatives to move the long-term unemployed into work - like time limits to create a sense of urgency and prevent people stagnating on benefits, and 40-hour work weeks - are what are needed to help unemployed families and communities, as well as taxpayers," Dr Newman said.

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

 

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>>

ALSO:

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>>

ALSO:

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>>

ALSO:

Wellington: Predator Free Capital Plan

Wellington City Council (WCC), the Greater Wellington Regional Council (GWRC) and NEXT Foundation, today announced a joint collaboration to make Wellington the first Predator Free capital city in the world. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On Judith Collins’ Efforts At Self Correction

Thousands of prisoners currently in prison may be entitled to an earlier release than expected – and compensation – because Corrections has incorrectly calculated their term of imprisonment. Unless of course, the government buries its mistakes by changing the law and retro-actively getting itself off the hook… More>>

ALSO:

More Justice & Corrections

Sector Opposes Bill: Local Government Bill Timeframe Extended

The Minister of Local Government Peseta Sam Lotu-Iiga has asked the Select Committee to extend the report back date for the Local Government Act 2002 Amendment Bill (No 2). More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Parliament
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news