CPAG commended for keeping child poverty issue at the forefront
“The Council of Trade Unions commends Child Poverty Action Group for their persistent work in keeping child poverty in the public domain and on everyone’s agenda,” CTU secretary Carol Beaumont said tonight, following the release of CPAG’s latest research report.
“This is very important research from leading social and economic researchers who are committed to showing how it is for less privileged people in our country. CPAG’s goals of eliminating child poverty and ensuring access to decent incomes, health services, education and housing will clearly resonate with most New Zealanders.”
“We agree with many of the points made in the report, and especially the need for targets to reduce child poverty. This has been important in the United Kingdom.”
“We also recognise changes that have been made by this government that have benefitted low-income people and working people.”
“20 hours free early childhood care, lower cost doctors visits and prescriptions and free childhood medical care, paid parental leave, regular minimum wage increases and Working for Families have all been very important in bringing in higher family incomes and beginning to reverse the terrible inequalities of the 1990s.”
“The CTU has consistently said that we need to front up to New Zealand’s low wage problem. We completely agree with CPAG about the need for decent work, decent employment conditions and decent wages.”
Carol Beaumont said that unions share concerns that CPAG has raised about income reductions that some people experience when losing work. Recent redundancy announcements have highlighted a concern that many workers in receipt of in-work payments through Working for Families will suddenly experience big income reduction at a time of extreme need and in times of high distress, she said.
“It’s an important discussion to have with Government and political parties, and the report opens up the debate on the kind of policies and protection that is needed,” Carol Beaumont said.