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Mangere advocates overwhelmed by numbers seeking support

MEDIA RELEASE

TUESDAY 5 AUGUST 2014

Mangere beneficiary ‘impact’ – advocates overwhelmed by numbers seeking support

On the first day of a beneficiary ‘impact’ in Mangere, advocates found themselves overwhelmed by the numbers seeking assistance.

“When we arrived soon after eight this morning, people were already lining up to see us.” says AAAP spokesperson Sue Bradford. “The queues just kept growing all day.”

A link to a short video clip from today is here: http://youtu.be/Jg4ZG1BV-Xg

“The effects of Paula Bennett’s welfare reforms are really kicking in.

“This is the third impact we’ve organised and it’s by far the largest. By 3pm we’d worked with at least 170 people, and there are two days to go.

“People are desperate for help with the most basic of needs – food, clothing, essential appliances – and decent housing.

“Some are on the wrong benefit. Others are getting less each week than even the paltry amount to which they’re entitled.

“National is determined to get and keep as many people off benefits as possible, 100,000 within ten years.

“The results are what we’re seeing here today. For example, in families where one person has been ‘sanctioned’ – cut off the benefit for some reason, often spurious – it is the rest of the family that pays the cost, with even less to go round.”

“Politicians make lovely speeches about child poverty, but this is the reality. Adults cannot feed their children when there is no money in the house – and sometimes, no house.

“The levels of need we’re seeing here are caused by deliberate government policies, not some random act beyond human control.

AAAP advocates are working flat out to assist as many people as possible. The impact continues Wednesday and Thursday from 9am – 4pm each day.

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