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


Policy developers breach children's rights


Policy developers breach children's rights

The Child Poverty Action Group (CPAG) welcomes Dr Janine Mardani's University of Otago research showing the government failed to consider children's rights in the initial development of Working for Families.

This failure was a breach of binding international law. Despite New Zealand being a signatory to the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCROC), the Convention was not considered during policy development for Working for Families. The relevant UNCROC principles are: participation of the policy's stakeholders, equality and freedom from discrimination, the best interests of children as a primary consideration, and the right to life with healthy development.

Dr Mardani's research found government failed to consult appropriate stakeholders, including the Office of the Commissioner for Children. Despite CPAG's earlier human rights complaint over existing discrimination, policy developers also did not allow participation by the group.

Furthermore Dr Mardani found that while the WFF package has benefited many thousands of children, it discriminates against the children most at risk: those who have parents reliant on state benefits. The package offers them little or no advantage, leaving them in relative disadvantage compared to less vulnerable children.

These findings are confirmed in the Household Incomes Report released last week. Disadvantage has deepened for one in every five of our poorest children.

CPAG asks "How much more proof do we need before this government, or the next, will take real action and stop tinkering around the edges of the problem? We know the huge costs poverty carries now and will bring in the future, as the consequences of preventable poor health and compromised education can follow children throughout their lives.

The CPAG v Attorney General case currently before the Human Rights Tribunal alleges that the discrimination against the poorest children within the Working for Families package has entrenched their poverty.

Associate Professor Mike O'Brien has challenged all the political parties to state their proposed actions to end child poverty in New Zealand. We want to hear what they have to say.


© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell: On DHB Deficits And Free Trade

Currently the world is looking on aghast at the Trump administration’s plans to slash Obamacare, mainly in order to finance massive tax changes that will deliver most of their gains to the wealthy. Lives will be lost in the trade-off. Millions of Americans stand to lose access to the healthcare they need.

Spot the difference with New Zealand, where DHBs are under intense pressure to reduce deficits within a climate of chronic underfunding. More>>


Greens' Response: Slum-Like Rentals Exposed In Renting Review

“...The grim findings of the review are a wakeup call about the true state of rentals in this country. Too many renters are festering in slum-like conditions under the thumb of landlords who have largely unchecked powers and ignore tenants’ complaints when it suits them.” More>>


Gordon Campbell: On The Life And Times Of Peter Dunne

The unkind might talk of sinking ships, others could be more reminded of a loaded revolver left on the desk by his Cabinet colleagues as they closed the door behind them, now that the polls in Ohariu had confirmed he was no longer of much use to National. More>>


Gordon Campbell: On Labour’s Campaign Launch

One of the key motifs of Ardern’s speech was her repeated use of the phrase – “Now, what?” Cleverly, that looks like being Labour’s response to National’s ‘steady as it goes’ warning against not putting the economic ‘gains’ at risk. More>>


Lyndon Hood: Social Welfare, Explained

Speaking as someone who has seen better times and nowadays mostly operates by being really annoying and humiliating to deal with, I have some fellow feeling with the current system, so I’ll take this chance to set a few things straight.. More>>


Deregistered: Independent Board Decision On Family First

The Board considers that Family First has a purpose to promote its own particular views about marriage and the traditional family that cannot be determined to be for the public benefit in a way previously accepted as charitable... More>>


Transport Policies: Nats' New $10.5bn Roads Of National Significance

National is committing to the next generation of Roads of National Significance, National Party Transport Spokesperson Simon Bridges says. More>>





Featured InfoPages

Opening the Election