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Child poverty report welcomed

Hon Ruth Dyson
Minister for Social Development & Employment, Minister for Senior Citizens, Minister for the Community and Voluntary Sector, Minister for Disability Issues

28 April 2008 Media Statement
Embargoed till 6.00pm today
Child poverty report welcomed

The Government welcomes the release of the Child Poverty Action Group’s analysis of how social and economic influences affect the wellbeing of our children, Social Development Minister Ruth Dyson said today.

“There is never a bad time to debate the issues affecting the health and welfare of our children and, with a general election approaching, this is a particularly good time for New Zealanders to consider options presented by the political parties.

“Notably, the report identifies the 1990s as a period when many of the negative influences in children’s wellbeing emerged and steadily got worse.

“Since then, the Labour-led Government has achieved a great deal in addressing those negative trends, as the Child Poverty Action Group acknowledges. We agree entirely that there is still much to be done. We are dedicated to investing in ways to eliminate poverty and improve life for individuals, families and communities, both economically and socially.

“That is why we have invested in initiatives such as Working for Families, paid parental leave, cheaper doctor’s fees and 20 hours free early childhood education.

“One of our top priorities has been to create the conditions for long-term sustainable economic growth because ultimately that will benefit all New Zealanders.

“From 2001 to 2008, an estimated total of 130,000 children are expected to be lifted out of poverty as a result of increasing employment, decreasing unemployment, Working for Families and other government policies.

“The Labour-led Government is proud of our record. We also recognise that achieving a fair and just society is an ongoing effort and we will continue to strive towards this goal.”


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