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

 

State of the Nation Report: NZ Social Policies Off Track

MEDIA RELEASE

Embargoed until 4am, Wednesday 8th February 2017


NEW ZEALAND SOCIAL POLICIES OFF TRACK


New Zealand’s efforts to provide adequate housing, reduce child poverty and stop re-offending have gone off track says The Salvation Army. Government needs to urgently address these failures by developing effective policy approaches and action to address these social deficits.

The tenth annual state of the Nation Report highlights some areas of social well-being where little or no progress is being made. These include:

• An alarming lack of safe affordable housing, resulting in a level of homelessness not seen in New Zealand in the lifetime of most Kiwis.
• A seemingly entrenched rate of child poverty
• Burgeoning incarceration rates of prisoners and the related high recidivism rates

‘In the past year Auckland experienced a 12-year high in new housing consents, but during the same time across the country the housing shortage got worse and housing became more unaffordable for people,’ says Colonel Ian Hutson, Social Policy Director. ‘This can’t continue. Housing policy needs to provide a sufficient supply of affordable houses.’

Over the past five years various reports, warnings and commentary by child protection experts have outlined the disturbing realities of child poverty in New Zealand. Despite this information and Government promises of action the present rate of child poverty has not changed, says report author Alan Johnson.

‘Entrenched child poverty has become the new norm. Politicians must stop just voicing sympathetic rhetoric and actually take real action to reduce child poverty numbers.’

The report also identifies that despite spending $850 million dollars annually on running prisons and a plan to spend one billion dollars on new prisons, recidivism worsened in the past year.

‘We are spending big on prisons, but failing to ensure that when people come out of prison they have work and a place to live, the two essentials in ensuring people don’t reoffend,’ Alan Johnson says.

The report does show that strong policies and leadership have had a positive impact on enrolments in Early Childhood Education, especially among our poorest communities,

Similarly, it acknowledges Government policy direction is having a positive impact in creating rising employment and growing GDP, plus reductions in youth offending and teenage pregnancies.

Hard questions remain though. ‘In an election year, it is timely to challenge all who would aspire to govern—and, in fact, all New Zealanders—to think deeply about the social progress we want to achieve for ourselves and our children,’ says Ian Hutson.


• The full report is available on www.salvationarmy.org.nz/Off theTrack

Scoop copies of documents:
TSASoTNOfftheTrack.pdf
TSA_SoTN2017HANDOUT_online.pdf

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell: On The Navy’s Dealings With Fat Leonard, And Twin Peaks

At an official level, our “she’ll be right” attitude routinely spills over into a keen resentment of anyone who suggests the outcomes may be less than satisfactory. Oversight at any level of performance is not New Zealand’s strong suit – from our one-chamber Parliament on downwards...

The Navy has now gone one step beyond. It won’t even ask itself whether it did a good job. More>>

 

NZDF: Fifth Rotation Of Troops Heads To Iraq

The fifth rotation of New Zealand Defence Force troops left today for a six-month mission training Iraqi soldiers. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The Demonising Of Iran

Will New Zealand still be willing to pursue its recent trade overtures to Iran, now that US President Donald Trump has used his speech in Riyadh to single out Iran as the main source of terrorism and instability in the Middle East? More>>

ALSO:

 
 
 
 

Opening The Election Supporters

 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • PARLIAMENT
  • POLITICS
  • REGIONAL
 
 

Featured InfoPages

Opening the Election