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'No-Go' Zones Not The Solution

'No-Go' Zones Not The Solution

Thursday 4 Mar 2004 Dr Muriel Newman Press Releases -- Social Welfare

Community response to the Government's Limited Employment Locations - or `no-go' zones - shows that, once again, Labour has got it wrong, ACT New Zealand Social Welfare Spokesman Dr Muriel Newman said today.

"Communities throughout New Zealand have shown this move for what it really is: a poll-driven PR ploy designed to convince the public that Labour is cracking down on welfare dependency," Dr Newman said.

"Labour's simplistic view, that communities can be isolated and identified as having no jobs, is bureaucratic rubbish. Within a short radius of almost any community, including these `no-go' communities, there is work available - be it seasonal, casual, full-time or part-time.

"Blacklisting communities will now make it extremely difficult for employers to find workers - unless Labour introduces ACT-style mandatory full-time Work for the Dole programmes to require those beneficiaries already living there to take on the jobs.

"Labour does not require people on the dole to work. It has allowed the dole to become an early retirement scheme for too many New Zealanders - 111,458 people currently receive an Unemployment Benefit, with some having been on it for years. That is patently unfair - not only to taxpayers, but also on the families and children forced to live in welfare poverty.

"Employers crying out for workers need to know that the Government will insist that people on the dole take up the jobs that are available. Further, beneficiaries in areas with absolutely no job opportunities should be encouraged to move.

"In these times of worker shortages, having more than 111,000 people on the dole is a disgrace - it is a sign of failure that, once again, Labour has got it wrong in welfare," Dr Newman said.

ENDS

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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