Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | News Video | Crime | Employers | Housing | Immigration | Legal | Local Govt. | Maori | Welfare | Unions | Youth | Search


Families get boost - child poverty set to deepen

Families will get much needed boost – but child poverty set to deepen

Today’s introduction of the In Work Payment (IWP) as part of the government’s Working for Families package means $1.6 billion new money for thousands of mid- to low-income families. “This is really important recognition of the need to invest in future generations – and of the extra costs which parents face,” says Child Poverty Action Group finance spokesperson Dr Susan St John.

However 230,000 children in benefit families will not receive any extra assistance today. These fail to qualify for the new ‘In Work Payment’. “Child poverty can only deepen for those in families left out. Children’s needs do not change because their parents do not work. The all-or-nothing IWP will create a double jeopardy.” St John warns. “When incomes fall as a result of job losses or reduced work hours, the child-based IWP will also disappear”.

CPAG argues that children need more security, not less, when things get tough financially. Low-paid workers are much more likely to be in jobs which are part-time, non-permanent and have variable working hours. There is a decade of evidence now showing that targeting family assistance on work status does not work, but only makes life tougher for children whose parents are in precarious employment situations.

When children’s basic needs go unmet, even for short periods, the damage to their health and educational prospects can be devastating and permanent. “Our children are our most precious resource, now and into the future. It is rash to expose them to the risks – and force them to face the costs - of inadequate and insecure minimum family incomes,” says Prof Innes Asher, CPAG Health Spokesperson.

“Parents are not always able to work to the levels required for the IWP,” says CPAG Research Analyst Donna Wynd. “If this payment is needed as a work incentive, then why are people without children left out? If this payment is about rewarding work then why is it based on how many children people have? The IWP is complex, discriminatory and unfair.

“Families with children make up the majority of foodbank clients, and the need for food assistance continues to grow. Hungry children are not inevitable, they are a symptom of our continued lack of support for low-income families.”

- The IWP is the subject of a case CPAG is bringing before the Human Rights Review Tribunal. CPAG alleges the payment discriminates against children on the basis of parental employment status. For more information see http://www.cpag.org.nz/campaigns/Child_Tax_Credit_IWP.html


© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines


Also, Loan Interest: Productivity Commission On Tertiary Education

Key recommendations include better quality control; making it easier for students to transfer between courses; abolishing University Entrance; enabling tertiary institutions to own and control their assets; making it easier for new providers to enter the system; and facilitating more and faster innovation by tertiary education providers... More>>


Higher Payments: Wellington Regional Council Becomes A Living Wage Employer

Councillor Sue Kedgley said she was delighted that the Wellington Regional Council unanimously adopted her motion to become a Living Wage employer, making it the first regional council in New Zealand to do so. More>>


Scoop Images:
Dame Patsy Reddy Sworn In As Governor-General

This morning Dame Patsy Reddy was sworn in as the New Zealand Realm’s 21st Governor-General. The ceremony began with a pōwhiri to welcome Dame Patsy and her husband Sir David Gascoigne to Parliament. More>>


Ruataniwha: DOC, Hawke's Bay Council Developer Take Supreme Court Appeal

The Department of Conservation and Hawke's Bay Regional Investment Company (HBRIC) are appealing to the Supreme Court over a conservation land swap which the Court of Appeal halted. More>>


With NZ's Marama Davidson: Women’s Flotilla Leaves Sicily – Heading For Gaza

Women representing 13 countries spanning five continents began their journey yesterday on Zaytouna-Oliva to the shores of Gaza, which has been under blockade since 2007. On board are a Nobel Peace Laureate, three parliamentarians, a decorated US diplomat, journalists, an Olympic athlete, and a physician. A list of the women with their background can be found here. More>>

Gordon Campbell: On The Key Style Of Crisis Management

At Monday’s post Cabinet press conference Key was in his finest wide- eyed “Problem? What problem?” mode. No, there wasn’t really a problem that top MPI officials had been at odds with each other over the meaning of the fisheries policy and how that policy should be pursued... More>>


Mt Roskill: Greens Will Not Stand In Likely Post-Goff By-Election

“The Green Party’s priority is changing the Government in 2017, and as part of that we’ve decided that we won’t stand a candidate in the probable Mt Roskill by-election... This decision shows the Memorandum of Understanding between Labour and the Green Party is working." More>>


Get More From Scoop



Search Scoop  
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news