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Maharey says anything to hide his inaction

Wed, 2 Feb 2005

Judith Collins MP National Party Welfare Spokeswoman

02 February 2004

Maharey says anything to hide his inaction

"Steve Maharey should offer New Zealanders a cast iron assurance that there are absolutely no beneficiaries who 'sit around all day watching Sky TV, living off the taxpayer, letting their children run riot and getting stoned'," says National Party Welfare Spokeswoman Judith Collins.

"Mr Maharey has chosen to misrepresent isolated comments made in a speech more than two years ago. But I know he won't give us any assurance because he knows I am right.

"What I said then was: 'The people working away at $8 per hour are the real heroes of New Zealand. They're the battlers - The people who try to get ahead by working and setting a good example for their children. They're the people who deserve my support and they're the people who get most upset when their neighbours sit around all day watching Sky TV, living off the taxpayer, letting their children run riot and getting stoned.'

"I stand by those comments. I do believe that the hard working taxpayer has a right to expect people to assume some personal responsibility for the welfare cheque they are receiving.

"That's why National is proposing community work for the dole, that's why we will move more of those on the DPB into work or retraining, and that's why we will make sure beneficiary parents get their kids to school.

"The Labour Government needs to understand that throwing money at people is not being compassionate. There are some people who need a lot more intensive effort to get them out of the poverty trap.

"After five and a half years of paying for Labour's welfare-state, National says it's time to look for solutions," says Ms Collins.

ENDS

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