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

 


Give all low-income children equal support says CPAG

14 July 2014

Give all low-income children equal support says CPAG

Child Poverty Action Group says the government should disentangle support for children from work incentives for parents, and treat all low income children equally.

CPAG welcomed recent concern about the highly discriminatory Parental Tax Credit for new-borns, which Metiria Turei called, "one of the most astonishing examples of Government punishing children simply for being poor that I've ever seen".

This discriminatory policy is not new, it was first introduced in New Zealand in 1996, when the parental tax credit first appeared. National is increasing this payment for those who don't get paid parental leave, from $1200 to a more generous $2400 but will continue to exclude the poorest new-borns, whose parents are judged not to be doing enough paid work.

CPAG says punishing children for simply being poor is a much bigger problem than just the Parental Tax Credit. Co-convenor Janfrie Wakim said, "The truth is a very large part of New Zealand's tax-funded payments to relieve child poverty are not available to the very poorest children, whose parents are reliant on welfare support benefits.

"National says families must be kept very poor and denied support for their children to give them an incentive to get off the benefit system and into full time work. This flawed and judgemental thinking is not part of the family tax credit system in Australia, where all low income children are treated the same with much better outcomes for children."

New Zealand has poor policies to support struggling families. The children most at risk and in need of additional support are denied extra help from the Parental Tax Credit when they are new-born. Based on the same flawed thinking, their families and many thousands of other families with older children also miss out on at least $60 a week of the In Work Tax Credit.

Despite the name, the In Work Tax Credit is just part of the weekly payment to the caregiver to help with the needs of children. It is a major problem that families have this taken away if they lose work in personal or natural disaster or in a recession, or they are unable to leave the benefit system for enough hours of paid work. The needs of low income children do not change when parental circumstances change.

So while the poorest families currently miss out on about $16m of the Parental Tax Credit they are also denied about $450m of the more significant In Work Tax Credit.

"There must be a total rethink of Working For Families as it does not work for the poorest children," said Janfrie Wakim.

ENDS

© 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>>

ALSO:

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>>

ALSO:

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>>

ALSO:

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>>

ALSO:

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>>

ALSO:

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>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Politics
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news