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


Money helps, But Money Is Not The Answer

Wednesday 10th Nov 1999
Richard Prebble
Media Release -- Social Welfare

"When Labour and National say to the electorate that their only difference on welfare policy is who gives more money - then most voters react by rightly thinking Labour and National are ignoring the real problem - state induced dependency," said ACT Leader Hon Richard Prebble in Dunedin today.

"The debate between Labour and National about Labour's TV solo mum and her seven children highlights two things. Firstly, for whatever reason this woman is eligible to receive from the state more money each week than most New Zealand families.

"Secondly, the state, by paying her from the first child through to the last, has set up a system that does nothing to mend broken families. It does nothing to ensure that children have loving and productive homes from which to take every opportunity for their development, education and employment. It is doing nothing to give people a hand up from dependence back to independence and work.

"No one to date has said what the exact circumstances of Labour's solo mum really is. But, even as an example it shows welfare is hurting those it is supposed to be helping.

"The contemptuous politics practised by all the other parties that says you can't question the system just won't cut it with voters. All New Zealanders want a real safety net should they or their families ever need it, but they know it's unfair to have a welfare system that can be a lifestyle option funded from their hard-earned money.

"If ACT's welfare policy had been in place when Labour's solo mum had her first child and she had been given a real hand up through education and the chance to support herself and her family would her life have been different? Of course, we don’t know her personal circumstances but we know that for thousands of women it would have been different and surely that is the real issue.

"ACT says we do need to debate this issue. We need to acknowledge that our welfare system is not solving the problem, it is part of the problem and politicians are to blame.

"ACT says a welfare system that really cares about people has independence and work as the goal. It meets their individual needs and helps them to overcome barriers to work. That's fair. That's real compassion.

"ACT is the only party that has a positive vision for welfare that works for people to help them get back on their feet, " said Hon Richard Prebble.


For more information visit ACT online at or contact the ACT Parliamentary Office at

© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

New Reports: Flood Risk From Rain And Sea Under Climate Change

One report looks at what would happen when rivers are flooded by heavy rain and storms, while the other examines flooding exposure in coastal and harbour areas and how that might change with sea-level rise.

Their findings show that across the country almost 700,000 people and 411,516 buildings worth $135 billion are presently exposed to river flooding in the event of extreme weather events...

There is near certainty that the sea will rise 20-30 cm by 2040. By the end of the century, depending on whether global greenhouse gas emissions are reduced, it could rise by between 0.5 to 1.1 m, which could add an additional 116,000 people exposed to extreme coastal storm flooding. More>>



Gordon Campbell: On The Commerce Commission Fuel Report

The interim Commerce Commission report on the fuel industry will do nothing to endear the major oil companies to the New Zealand public... More>>


Emergency Govt Bill: Overriding Local Licensing For The Rugby

“It’s pretty clear some clubs are having difficulty persuading their district licensing committees to grant a special licence to extend their hours for this obviously special event, and so it makes sense for Parliament to allow clubs to meet a community desire." More>>


Leaving Contract Early: KiwiBuild Programme Losing Another Top Boss

Ms O'Sullivan began a six-month contract as head of KiwiBuild Commercial in February, but the Housing Ministry has confirmed she has resigned and will depart a month early to take up a new job. More>>


Proposed National Policy Statement: Helping Our Cities Grow Up And Out

“We need a new approach to planning that allows our cities to grow up, especially in city centres and around transport connections. We also have to allow cities to expand in a way that protects our special heritage areas, the natural environment and highly productive land." More>>


Ombudsman's Report: Ngāpuhi Elder 'Shocked' By Conditions At Ngawha Prison

A prominent Ngāpuhi elder is shocked to find inmates at Ngawha Prison are denied water and forced to relieve themselves in the exercise yard... Chief Ombudsman Peter Boshier has released a report highly critical of conditions at the Northland prison. More>>


Promises: Independent Election Policy Costing Unit A Step Closer

The creation of an entity to provide political parties with independent and non-partisan policy costings is a step closer today, according to Finance Minister Grant Robertson and Associate Finance Minister James Shaw. More>>


School's In: Primary And Intermediate Principals Accept New Offer

Primary and intermediate school principals have voted to accept a new settlement from the Ministry of Education, which includes entrenched pay parity with secondary principals. More>>


IPCA On 'Rawshark' Investigation: Multiple Police Failings In Hager Searches Confirmed

The Independent Police Conduct Authority has found that the Police's unlawful search of Nicky Hager's property in October 2014 resulted from an unwitting neglect of duty and did not amount to misconduct by any individual officer... More>>


Broadcasting Standards: Decisions On Coverage Of Mosque Attacks

The Authority upheld one of these complaints, finding that the use of extensive excerpts from the alleged attacker’s livestream video on Sky News New Zealand had the potential to cause significant distress to audiences in New Zealand, and particularly to the family and friends of victims, and the wider Muslim community. More>>




InfoPages News Channels