Parliament

Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | Video | Questions Of the Day | Search

 

Welfare realities contradict rosy Govt picture

25 October 2006

Welfare realities contradict rosy Government picture

Green Party Welfare Spokesperson Sue Bradford has raised a series of examples in the House to illustrate the desperate state of welfare delivery in New Zealand, and the lack of consistency in the administration of welfare assistance to the country's most needy people.

"The reality on the ground contradicts the rosy Government assurances about the extent of assistance available. In the House this week I have been giving a series of examples of the hardship being endured due to the inconsistent way the criteria are being applied between and within regions, and the lack of flexibility in the response to those in genuine need.

"Some of this hardship is of the Government's own making. The abolition of the Special Benefit earlier this year ushered in a less generous, less flexible system for those in greatest need. Even though the Working for Families package has helped out families in paid work, it has left the most vulnerable beneficiaries and their children almost entirely out of the equation.

"Beneficiaries and their children face meanly devised and variably administered systems that routinely. leave them without their due entitlements, and that sometimes impose stand-down periods on seasonal workers and others who are in desperate need through no fault of their own.

The details that make these programmes workable are often left hanging. In the seasonal worker initiatives announced today by Immigration Minister David Cunliffe for instance, will those temporary migrant workers brought in from the Pacific be eligible for welfare assistance, and will they face long stand-down periods between work, or during bad weather conditions? Such issues have plagued seasonal workers who are New Zealand citizens, and may well be worse for migrant workers.

"We are still waiting to hear from Employment Minister David Benson-Pope about his proposed 'Single Core Benefit' plans, and what provisions will ensure such a scheme is flexible to guarantee that no one who is out of work, sick, or raising children on their own is left in need, due to failing to get past a core set of bureaucratic hurdles. Or through falling foul of a punitive new abatement regime.

"The Green Party would scrap the entire 1964 Social Security Act, and start again with a much simpler system operating on principles of sufficiency and universality. Those in need deserve the dignity of having enough to live on so they can participate fully in society without being treated as second class citizens by the department whose job it is to serve them."

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

PM's Statement: Deadly Eruption Of Whakaari / White Island

At this stage, we can confirm that amongst those currently listed as missing or injured are New Zealanders who were part of the tour operation, and tourists from Australia, the United States, the United Kingdom, China and Malaysia. That is to the best of our knowledge.

To those who have lost or are missing family and friends, we share in your unfathomable grief at this moment in time, and in your sorrow. Your loved ones stood alongside kiwis who were hosting you here. We grieve with you, and we grieve with them... More>>

Police Update: Work Continues On Recovery; Clarification On Investigation
Police has been working with Defence and Fire and Emergency NZ (FENZ) to determine conditions on the island including gas levels in the atmosphere, so that we can understand the nature of the current conditions...
Police can also confirm we have commenced an investigation into the circumstances of the deaths and injuries on Whakaari / White Island... To correct an earlier statement, it is too early to confirm whether there will also be a criminal investigation. More>>

Gordon Campbell: On The Eruption And Tourism Safety
Adventure tourism is a central theme in New Zealand tourism, and by definition, adventure always includes a certain level of risk. That said, New Zealand itself is also at risk of being seen as a tourism destination where commercial factors – rather than safety factors – are routinely allowed to determine the point where the boundary line of acceptable risk is being drawn. More>>

 
 

Select Committee Report: Combatting Foreign Election Interference

MPs have finally delivered their recommendations to combat foreign interference in elections in a long awaited and much delayed report. More>>

Mosque Attacks: Names Of Arresting Officers Released

Police are now in the position to name the two officers involved in the arrest of the alleged gunman responsible for the attacks on the Al Noor and Linwood Mosques on March 15. More>>

Big, Bold, Permanent Change Needed: Children's Commissioner On 2019 Child Poverty Monitor

“I want to see family incomes dramatically raised by increasing benefits and making the minimum wage a living wage. And the Government needs to move much faster at increasing the supply of social housing..." More>>

ALSO:

RNZ Live Updates: Weather Mayhem Strands Tourists; Major Roads Closed

Hundreds of tourists are stranded on the West Coast, and on the other side of the South Island a flood-damaged bridge has closed State Highway 1, after a weekend of torrential rain... More>>

ALSO:

Policing: Armoured Specialist Police Vehicles

New Zealand Police has taken delivery of three Armoured Special Purpose Vehicles. The vehicles are unmarked and look like standard Toyota Land cruisers... They will not be used for patrol. More>>

Single Use PVC And Polystyrene Out: Next Steps On Plastic Waste

The Government will phase out more single-use plastics following the success of its single-use plastic bag ban earlier this year and the release today of a pivotal report for dealing with waste. More>>

ALSO:

Faafoi Statement: Minister's Suspicious Immigration Texts

I have apologised to the Prime Minister and understand I have let her down in regards to my dealings with Jason Kerrison over an immigration matter concerning his family. More>>

ALSO:

NZ First Conflicts Of Interest: New Details Around Timeline

New information has emerged showing it was the New Zealand First chief of staff who identified potential conflicts of interest between a forestry company and two senior government ministers, sparking a series of declarations. More>>

Earlier:

Donations:

Five New Cancer Meds In Six Months: Pharmac Funds More Cancer Medicines, Faster Assessment

PHARMAC has confirmed that two new medicines – olaparib for ovarian cancer and fulvestrant for breast cancer – have been approved for funding... Rituximab and bortezomib, which are already funded, have also been approved for widened access following successful commercial proposals from new suppliers. More>>

ALSO:

 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • PARLIAMENT
  • POLITICS
  • REGIONAL
 


 

InfoPages News Channels