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Best Start for children under Labour

David Cunliffe
Labour Leader

27 January 2014

Best Start for children under Labour

Kiwi kids will get the best start towards a happy, healthy and successful life under the next Labour government, Labour Leader David Cunliffe says.

“Our Best Start package will focus on the first five years of a child’s life and help families struggling to meet the rising costs of living.

“It will give 59,000 families with new-borns a $60 a week payment through to their baby’s first birthday. That investment will continue for parents on modest and middle incomes until their child turns three.

“Sixty dollars will make a real difference to the lives of struggling parents. For example, it will pay for a weekly supply of nappies and baby food.

“There will also be free antenatal classes for all first time mothers and early home visits.

“Free early childhood education for three, four and five year old children will be expanded from 20 to 25 hours a week, and paid parental leave will be extended from 14 to 26 weeks as set out in Sue Moroney’s Member’s Bill.

“These are tough times for New Zealand families. This package is a first step in Labour's overall programme of reform which includes education, health, housing, and economic development.

“With the best start in life, all our kids will do better in school, achieve more and contribute to our country's future.

“We all benefit from living in a society where everyone can reach their full potential. These policies make that possible from the start. The Best Start payment is in line with similar schemes in other OECD countries.

“I am a proud father of two boys. Like every parent, I want the best for my children.

“That is why I promise that as Prime Minister, my government will stand with parents to give their kids the best possible start in life,” David Cunliffe says.

For more information:
Best Start fact sheet
Fiscals fact sheet

ENDS

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