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Human Rights Viewpoint Sought on WINZ Shared Parenting Law

Human Rights Viewpoint Sought on WINZ Shared Care Parenting Law.

The office of the Humans Rights Commissioner has been requested to look into the way WINZ treats separated parents who share their children’s care equally.

A single father campaigning to change the WINZ approach to shared care has asked the Commissioner to consider section 70B of New Zealand’s Social Security Act in light of New Zealand’s Human Rights Act and the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child.

“If both parents receive a welfare benefit while their kids are young, WINZ treats one equally contributing parent as a fulltime sole parent. The other equally contributing parent is treated as an unemployed adult and expected to seek fulltime work.” said 50/50 campaign organiser Duncan Eddy.

“This unequal treatment of two people in the same situation seems to me to be a clear example of discrimination, as defined in the Humans Rights Act.”

“I’ve also asked the Commissioner to advise whether compelling single parents with toddlers to seek fulltime work breaches New Zealand’s international human rights obligations.” said Mr Eddy.

In 2011 the United Nations Committee on the Rights of the Child observed that New Zealand needs to intensify efforts to render appropriate assistance to parents and legal guardians in the performance of their child-rearing responsibilities.

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