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

 


Adequate family incomes essential to reduce child poverty

2 September 2014: News from CPAG
Adequate family incomes essential to reduce child poverty


Child Poverty Action Group says making sure families have enough money to care for their children is a fundamental part of the solution to child poverty.

In a new policy paper on family incomes, CPAG recommends well supported benefits and tax credits, and an increase in the minimum wage to provide for the needs of children in low income families.

Adequate incomes to address child poverty is the fifth and last in a series of CPAG policy papers being released in the lead up to the 2014 election with recommendations for policy change to alleviate child poverty. The compilation Our Children, Our Choice will be published online and in hard copy on 9 September.

Co-author, Associate Professor Susan St John said, "It is unacceptable that families live in poverty because the social assistance system that is supposed to support them is not doing its job properly. The current debate tends to focus on other aspects of poverty as if cash income is not relevant. Of course improvements to health services, quality education, affordable and appropriate housing are vitally important, but families must also have enough weekly income to meet the needs of their children."

Current benefit policy is focused on moving people from a benefit into paid work, without considering the impact on children's health and well-being. Paid work can only be part of the strategy to reduce poverty. Beneficiaries with children often cannot take on paid work because of their personal circumstances, while others can't find work that allows them to meet their parenting obligations satisfactorily. Furthermore, paid work does not guarantee that children will move above the poverty line. 40% of children living in poverty are in working families.

CPAG also argues that social assistance for families with children is far too complicated and needs a complete overhaul. Susan St John said, "The system is a dog's breakfast. Navigating the maze of benefits, supplementary payments, family tax credits, abatements, shared care rules, hours of paid work requirements, reassessments, demands for payments, and penalties, is demanding even for experts.

"Without understanding how the various tax credits work, a sole parent is supposed to respond by getting a job, any job. The In Work Tax Credit, Family Tax Credit and others all have different rules. The required fixed weekly hours of work are far too difficult to police and monitor consistently in a modern, casualised labour market. Furthermore, parents at home looking after young children are already working but their contribution is devalued and their children side-lined."

CPAG has made ten recommendations to improve income support for families and address child poverty, including abolishing sanctions on the income of beneficiaries with dependent children, restoring the principle of equal treatment for all low income children and gaining cross party support for an overhaul of all parts of the welfare and tax credit system that affect families with children.

Download the full report here: Adequate incomes to address child poverty


Our Children, Our Choice brings together five policy papers released by CPAG in the lead up to the election and calls for cross party agreement to underpin an action plan to reduce child poverty in New Zealand.


---ENDS---

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

TV3 Video: Key 'Genuinely Couldn't Recall' Texts
Reaction: Greens | More

Gordon Campbell: On Government Arrogance

Right now, National is ramming anti-terrorism measures through Parliament. This legislation will grant the SIS the power to carry out 48 hour bouts of surveillance on anyone without a warrant, and will bestow on government the power to unilaterally revoke anyone’s passports and thus deny them the freedom to travel.

Ludicrously, the public has been given exactly one day to make submissions on these major infringements of their civil liberties. Despite Finlayson’s misleading signals on RNZ that these are only stopgaps until next year’s full review of our security laws, the measures in question will not, in fact, expire until 2018.

Why the insane rush? Good question. More>>

 
 

Parliament Today:

Glenn Inquiry: Report Offers Solutions To Family Violence

The People’s Blueprint unveiled today by Sir Owen Glenn’s independent inquiry into child abuse and domestic violence outlines a new, more cohesive and effective system for reducing New Zealand’s alarmingly high family violence rates. More>>

ALSO:

Key Texts With Whale Oil Released: PM Can’t Be Trusted Over Dirty Politics Defence - Greens

John Key’s answers to questions about dirty politics can’t be trusted, after he was forced to admit that he had misled journalists and Parliament about contact with attack blogger Cameron Slater, said the Green Party today.. More>>

ALSO:

Temporary Release Crackdown Continues: Corrections Review Of Phillip Smith Case

“The review by Corrections’ Chief Custodial Officer reveals that the plan for Smith’s series of temporary releases was overly ambitious and misinformed. He’s a highly manipulative and deceptive person who although technically eligible, should not have been considered for temporary release." More>>

ALSO:

White Ribbon Day: Govt Resumes Sexual Violence Trial Proceedings Work

Justice Minister Amy Adams has asked the Law Commission to resume work on proposals for better supporting victims of sexual violence through the criminal process. The Law Commission will revisit its previous work on alternative pre-trial and trial processes to identify options for improving complainants’ experience in court. More>>

ALSO:

"New Faces, Wise Heads": Andrew Little Announces New Labour Line Up

Labour Leader Andrew Little today announced a bold new caucus line up which brings forward new talent and draws on the party’s depth of experience. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On Rick Ellis As Te Papa’s New CEO

The recent appointment of former TVNZ boss Rick Ellis to head Te Papa has copped a fair bit of criticism. Much of it has been inspired by the suspicion that Ellis has been hired to pursue the same purely commercial goals as he did at TVNZ, while similarly neglecting the serious cultural side of his mandate. More>>

Passport Cancellation, Surveillance: Draft 'Foreign Fighters Legislation' Released

The final draft of the Countering Terrorist Fighters Legislation Bill contains proposals previously announced by Mr Key in a major national security speech earlier this month. More>>

ALSO:

Related

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Politics
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news