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It’s About Time – NCWNZ backs income splitting

16 December 2009
PRESS RELEASE
It’s About Time – NCWNZ backs income splitting

“It’s about time that the work involved in raising a family was recognized as a valuable contribution to society” says Elizabeth Bang, President of the National Council of Women of New Zealand (NCWNZ), following the Government release of an Issues Paper on income splitting on the weekend.

NCWNZ has campaigned for income splitting for the last ten years, but its history of support for the work of the mother at home goes back 114 years to the organisation’s very beginnings. Kate Sheppard claimed that a woman “who elects to stay at home to care for her own children should be awarded a just share of her husband’s income, paid into her own account”.

Income splitting is clearly about the recognition of parenting as work, most of which is still done primarily by women as mothers, often juggled around other part time paid work.

The simplest and most effective way to recognise the shared responsibility for raising a family is through the tax structures, as the income earned by the employed partner supports both of them. It is a partnership arrangement couples may make, not dissimilar to any business partnership.

“It is not a handout from government; it simply gives due recognition to the contribution of both partners in raising a family. It is timely to act,” says Elizabeth Bang.

NCWNZ has passed policy that supports the proposition that all couples, married or de facto, should have the option of registering their partnership with IRD, so that any income earned by either partner may be declared as partnership income, and each partner would pay tax on their own share of that income. This view will be reiterated when NCWNZ makes a submission to the paper in early February 2010.

ENDS

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