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Ministerial Poverty Committee making progress

Hon Bill English
Deputy Prime Minister

Hon Tariana Turia
Minister for Whanau Ora

8 August 2012

Ministerial Poverty Committee making progress

The Ministerial Committee on Poverty is working through a number of issues critical to improving the lives of low-income New Zealanders and their families.

It is focused on supporting New Zealanders from all backgrounds to move out of long-term poverty, tackling the impacts of poverty and ensuring the Government’s interventions are effective and delivering value for money for taxpayers.

The committee was set up earlier this year under the National-Māori Party relationship accord and confidence and supply agreement.

“We want to ensure government activities are effective in changing the circumstances that trap people in poverty by providing them with real opportunities to make changes and choices,” Deputy Prime Minister and committee chairman Bill English says.

“We’re focused on ensuring the Government is getting results from the billions of dollars it spends on a wide range of social services.”

Whanau Ora Minister and committee deputy chair Tariana Turia says the ministerial committee, which held its fourth meeting this week, had set clear priorities to help more New Zealanders out of poverty.

“We recognise that addressing the issue of poverty will take collaborative and innovative solutions across Ministerial portfolios. We have areas of focus, including education, particularly early childhood education for families most in need, creating employment and training opportunities, and providing safe, healthy and secure homes for whanau.”

“We are also continuing our discussions on expanding that programme, to create meaningful outcomes to address the determinants of poverty.”

The committee this week met the co-chairs of the Expert Advisory Group on Child Poverty, an independent panel established by the Children’s Commissioner, which will release a report on child poverty in the next few weeks.

The ministerial committee has today issued a number of documents backgrounding issues being considered by the committee. They are available at: www.dpmc.govt.nz/dpmc/publications/mcop

ENDS

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