27 October 2004
Slashing DPB is Not Family-Friendly
Making workplaces more family friendly was the real answer to helping sole parents back into the workforce – rather than slashing their benefits, Council of Trade Unions secretary Carol Beaumont said today.
An OECD report, Babies and Bosses, suggested cutting the domestic purposes benefit to push sole parents into finding a job. However, the report also emphasised a need to improve childcare arrangements for working parents.
Unions recognised progress in providing childcare announced in the Government’s Working for Families package of reforms.
“Many sole parents are prevented from work or training by a lack of quality, affordable childcare,” Carol Beaumont said.
The report comes directly after an ILO study which found that New Zealand workers were putting in the second-longest hours in the Western world.
“Excessive hours and workloads, low pay and lack of childcare are some key work-life balance issues that unions have identified as barriers to paid employment for many women,” Carol Beaumont said.
The CTU was releasing its own report next week which would call for employers and unions to work together to find solutions that would allow workers to balance work with family responsibilities and leisure time.