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

Christchurch Fires: Friday Morning Update

Slightly cooler weather conditions and higher humidity with some light rain having fallen early this morning is welcome relief for emergency services fighting the Port Hills fire in Christchurch..

It has been a quiet night with a few minor flare ups contained by fire crews. Thermal imaging is being used to identify hot spots. There is a lot of work to do to clean up the whole fire area and this will go on for several days.

Te Hapua Welfare Centre remains open with a small amount of people staying there. Nga Hau E Wha Marae and the Selwyn welfare centre have been closed. Police cordons are still in place and these areas are still considered dangerous. The situation is being constantly reassessed and we will provide further information as soon as it is available. More>>

 
 

Turnbull Visit: Leaders’ Talks Cement Trade Relations, Science Agreement

Mr English met with Prime Minister Turnbull in Queenstown today to discuss common approaches to bilateral and international issues, including trade and science and innovation. Mr English also thanked Mr Turnbull for Australia’s offer of support for those fighting the fires on the Port Hills in Christchurch. More>>

ALSO:

Youth Guarantee: Upskilling Fund Used For Retraining

News that one in five of the people enrolling in Youth Guarantee already hold qualifications at the level they’re enrolling in highlights the failure of the scheme to reach the disengaged young people it was set up to assist, says Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On What Trump May Mean For Us

So far not much effort has been put into tracing the possible implications for New Zealand of the stream of executive orders and tweets that have been pouring from the Oval Office. Unfortunately, we may not simply be drive-by rubberneckers at this car wreck for much longer. More>>

Pike River Select Committee: Solid Energy Chair Talks Resignation Over Re-Entry

Andy Coupe, chair of failed state-owned coal miner Solid Energy, said at a fiery select committee this morning that he would consider resigning if the government orders the company to re-enter the Pike River coal mine. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On Labour’s Candidacy Troubles

So its official. Greg O’Connor will indeed be Labour’s candidate in Ohariu and – as also signaled well in advance – the Greens will not be standing a candidate in the electorate. At this point, you have to question the validity of the Greens’ excuse – “we need to change the government” – for tagging along.... More>>

ALSO:

Post-Shooting Security: Guards Say WINZ Safety Protocols Unsafe

“The safety issue has moved from inside WINZ offices to outside where security guards are isolated in front of locked doors with nowhere to retreat if they need help,” says Len. More>>

ALSO:

PM’s Press Conference: Housing, Housing, Housing

Questions from the gallery focused on housing, asking about the Auckland Unitary Plan, the potential skills and resource shortage and whether NZ would seek help from overseas. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Politics
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news