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Better Communities through Better Wages

Better Communities through Better Wages


As the strong dollar tips more people onto the unemployment queue, the Government’s failure to create jobs is being highlighted, says New Zealand First.

“People do want to work to lift themselves out of poverty but there are obstacles – few jobs and wages so low that families cannot survive on them,” says Spokesperson for Social Policy/Welfare Le’aufa’amulia Asenati Lole-Taylor.

“A 50 cent increase to the minimum wage doesn’t go far enough for families struggling to put food on the table.

“While the Government focuses on juggling welfare agencies, they are completely ignoring job creation. In fact, in five years there’s been a thorough cleanout of most low skilled jobs to overseas companies, leaving little opportunity to get a foothold into employment.

“They have failed to provide conditions to allow business and industry to prosper. There are too few skills training programs and migrants have been encouraged to flood in to keep wages down.

“Young people are feeling anxious and discouraged about the lack of employment.

“We want to see good employment policy – that leads to good jobs – with good wages.

“New Zealand has one of the most unequal income distributions in the OECD.

“Significantly raising low wages will go a long way to addressing this. It will also have a wider positive social impact on education and health in lower socio-economic communities.

“New Zealand has 150,000 unemployed and many who work full-time don’t earn enough money to cover basic expenses.

“A growing class of working poor has emerged under National’s watch,” says Mrs Lole-Taylor.

ENDS

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Gordon Campbell:
On First Time Voting (Centre Right)

For the next two days, I’m turning my column over to two guest columnists who are first time voters. I’ve asked them to explain why they were voting, for whom and what role they thought their parental upbringing had played in shaping their political beliefs ; and at the end, to choose a piece of music.

One guest columnist will be from the centre right, one from the centre left. Today’s column is from the centre right – by James Penn:

As someone who likes to consider himself, in admittedly vainglorious fashion, a considered and rational actor, the act of voting for the first time is a somewhat confusing one. I know that my vote has a close to zero chance of actually influencing the outcome of Parliament. The chance I will cast the marginal vote that adds to National or Act’s number of seats in Parliament is miniscule. The chance, even if I did, that doing so would affect the government makes voting on a strictly practical level even more spurious as a worthwhile exercise.

But somehow I have spent a large amount of time (perhaps detrimentally so, depending on the outcome of my upcoming exams) agonising over how to cast my first vote in a national election. More>>

 

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