Parliament

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

 

Dunne: Help into housing; more parental leave

Dunne: Help into housing; more parental leave and DNA paternity testing

Families should be allowed to capitalise their Working for Families entitlements to buy first homes, extend parental leave to 13 months, and there should be compulsory DNA paternity testing, UnitedFuture leader Peter Dunne says.

In releasing UnitedFuture’s Report Card on the State of the Family today, Mr Dunne said there needs to be some “serious rethinking” of how New Zealand supports families.

“We need to really look at some of the fundamentals that we have in place around families, because right now there are too many ways in which they are struggling in these difficult times.

“We hold parents accountable for how they raise their children and have high expectations that those children will be safe, well and nurtured. To do that, society – and government – must play a key role to ensure families themselves are safe, well and nurtured,” he said.

Mr Dunne said that one simple step in actively support families would be allowing them to capitalise their Working for Families entitlement as a lump sum to get a deposit on a first home, or possibly extend their existing home.

“That money is to support families anyway; we need to drop the bureaucracy and make it flexible enough to be really useful as a social investment in families and housing is key to that.

UnitedFuture would also support extending paid parental leave to 13 months, including one month for fathers.

“This would enable infants to be cared for by their parents during the crucial first year of childhood, which has been shown to improve family stability, reduce child poverty and lay a foundation that reduces the incidence of child abuse.

‘Too often we put the ambulance at the bottom of the cliff. We need to look at smarter ways to help families avoid problems, rather than try to solve them later when things are going wrong.

“Giving parents more time with their children early on is a no-brainer for a society that wants strong families and healthy, secure children,” he said.

Mr Dunne said compulsory DNA paternity testing in cases where claims, counter-claims and doubts exist over the parentage of a child would “unnecessarily excite certain civil libertarian tendencies” but commonsense needed to apply.

“Frankly, where something as fundamental as fatherhood and a child’s right to know and be supported by its parents is at stake, someone wishing not to submit to a mouth swab is small beer in the scheme of things.

“We need to get our priorities right. Looking after our children and taking responsibility for them is a top priority in my book,” he said.

The full Report Card on the State of the Family can be found at www.unitedfutureorg.nz
or below.

Ends

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Campbell on: the local body election result in Wellington

For obvious reasons, politics is more of a big deal in the capital city than anywhere else in the country. Even so, fewer than four in ten eligible voters bothered to vote in Saturday’s local body elections in Wellington (turnout 39.66%).

Even less was felt to be at stake this time around than in 2016, when 45% of the electorate voted Justin Lester into the mayoralty.

To put it mildly, the Lester-led Council failed to live up to expectations. Lester will be remembered mainly for the fact that somehow, he managed to lose this election. . More>>

 
 

Could Do Better: Post-Sroubek Review Of Deportation Info

Ms Tremain acknowledges that the review highlighted some aspects of the process that can be improved and makes five main recommendations to strengthen the existing processes for preparing files for decision-makers. Those recommendations are: More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On A New Book On The Leaky Homes Scandal

We all know that journalism is short of cash and under pressure from the speed, brevity and clickbait pressures of the 24/7 news cycle… but hey, given the right subject and a sufficiently stubborn journalist, it can still surpass most of the works of the academic historians... More>>

Regulation: Review Finds NZTA Road Safety Failings

The independent review, carried out by consultant agency MartinJenkins, lists at least 10 reasons for the failures including the agency being focused on customer service at the expense of its policing functions. More>>

ALSO:

Rod Carr: Climate Change Commission Chair-Designate Announced

Climate Change Minister James Shaw has today announced the appointment of Dr Rod Carr as Chair-designate for the Climate Change Commission. More>>

ALSO:

Compliance Complaints: 'Putting Right' Holidays Act Underpayment In Health

The Government is putting right a decade’s worth of underpayment to nurses, doctors and other health workers, says Health Minister Dr David Clark. More>>

ALSO:

IPCA: Disasterous Police Pursuit, Excessive Use Of Dogs

At no stage did Police follow the correct procedure for the commencement of a pursuit... A Police dog handler used his dog to help with the arrest of two of the young people. One suffered injuries resulting in his hospitalisation, and the Authority found that the use of the dog was an excessive use of force. More>>

ALSO:

‘Hard Place To Be Happy’: Report On Youth Residential Care

Children’s Commissioner Andrew Becroft says the report, A Hard Place to be Happy, contains important challenges from children and young people, aged 9 to 17, about their experiences in care and protection residences. “I found this report extremely difficult to read, and I think most New Zealanders would too.” More>>

Africa And Middle East Refugees: 'Family Link' Restriction Removed

The founder of the Double the Quota campaign has applauded the coalition government for Friday’s announcement that a discriminatory policy would be removed. More>>

ALSO:

 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • PARLIAMENT
  • POLITICS
  • REGIONAL
 
 

InfoPages News Channels