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


Government inaction on living costs hitting beneficiaries

Government inaction on living costs hitting beneficiaries hardest

Statistics New Zealand’s latest report highlights that people on the benefit have been disproportionately hit by increased living costs, compared to New Zealand’s wealthiest. The cost of living for people on the benefit rose 0.6 percent, compared with 0.1 percent for all households. Meanwhile, the wealthiest spending households saw a reduction of 0.2 percent on their costs of living. Auckland Action Against Poverty is calling on the Government to take urgent action to address growing inequality between the rich and poor.

“The latest Stats NZ report shows that families on the breadline are struggling to make ends meet. While income levels for beneficiaries remain stagnant, living costs are rapidly rising, resulting in a record number of beneficiaries having to access hardship grants from Work and Income to meet basic needs such as food”, says Ricardo Menendez March, Auckland Action Against Poverty Coordinator.

“The Stats NZ report highlights that not enough has been done to address inequality in New Zealand. The Government needs to take measures to increase benefit levels and fix our tax system that is burdening our low-income people disproportionately.

“New Zealand’s tax system is putting an undue burden on low-income families, and it is doing little to redistribute wealth into the pockets of our most vulnerable. While beneficiaries continue being most impacted by the excise tax on tobacco and petrol, no new taxes are on the Government’s programme to target wealth accumulation by the rich. Our wealthiest can continue consuming tobacco products without negatively affecting their finances, while beneficiaries are being punished for what is ultimately a public health issue.

“As the Government budget approaches we are calling for an increase on core benefit levels and progressive tax reform. We are hopeful the recommendations from the Welfare Expert Advisory Group which are released will include an increase on core benefit levels, and better provision of affordable public housing.

“The Prime Minister needs to do more than speak of kindness and compassion towards our most vulnerable. It needs to introduce tangible policies to narrow the growing gap between the rich and the poor, which is being highlighted by her Government’s own departments.


© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell: On Our Unreal Optimism About The Economic Impact Of Coronavirus

At this week’s Chinese New Year celebrations, PM Jacinda Ardern was resolutely upbeat that business with China would soon bounce back to normal – better than ever, even - once the coronavirus epidemic has been brought under control. To Ardern, the adversity has only accentuated just how close we are to Beijing Nothing wrong with being upbeat, if it can calm the nerves and turn business sentiment into a self-fulfilling prophecy. The problems begin when the optimism detaches itself from reality. What has been very odd so far about the coronavirus episode is that global share markets – normally spooked by mere sneezes or sniffles in the world’s major economies - have continued to be fairly positive, even as the epidemic has unfolded... More>>

First Published on Werewolf here


Gordon Campbell: On The Political Donations Scandals
Even paranoids have real enemies. While there has been something delusionary about the way New Zealand First has been living in denial about its donations scandal, one can sympathise with its indignation about Paula Bennett and Simon Bridges being among its chief accusers. More>>


UN Expert: NZ Housing Crisis Requires Bold Human Rights Response

This is a press statement from UN Special Rapporteur on the right to housing at the end of her 10-day visit to New Zealand. The Government of New Zealand has recognized that the country is facing a housing crisis, said Leilani Farha, UN Special Rapporteur ... More>>


2020 And Beyond: National’s Economic Plan

National Leader Simon Bridges has today outlined National’s economic plan heading into election 2020. “National understands the economy and how it impacts on New Zealanders day to day lives... More>>


Abortion Legislation Committee: Abortion Bill Report Presented To The House

The Abortion Legislation Committee has presented its report on the Abortion Legislation Bill to the House. A copy of the report is available here. The bill seeks to have abortion services provided like other health services... More>>


Auditor-General's Report : Water Management

The Auditor-General’s report Reflecting on our work about water management was presented to the House of Representatives today. Over the last two years we have been looking at how well public organisations are carrying out their water management ... More>>






InfoPages News Channels