Scoop has an Ethical Paywall
Work smarter with a Pro licence Learn More

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

 

Wellbeing budget fails to deliver for beneficiaries

The wellbeing budget has failed to introduce additional meaningful and immediate measures to improve the wellbeing of beneficiaries’ lives.

“The Government’s wellbeing budget showed a lack of new initiatives to address rising poverty and inequality, with the key welfare announcement being a legislative change which would index benefit levels to the average wage”, says Ricardo Menendez March, Auckland Action Against Poverty Coordinator.

“The indexing of benefit levels to the average wage is a tokenistic move by Government that does not address the calls by the Welfare Expert Advisory Group for an urgent increase of core benefit levels of up to 47%. The projected increase in beneficiaries’ incomes as a result of the indexing changes will only result in an additional $27-$47 a week by 2023, which is far less than what the WEAG recommended.

“The net change of incomes as a result of indexing benefits to the average wage is small increase when the costs of living continue to increase, and the housing crisis shows little signs of easing for those on low-income.

“We are concerned there’s no additional funding for the Housing and Urban Development (HUD), or new money for public housing. With the social housing waiting list continues to reach record levels, there is a desperate need for additional funding for more state homes for the people on the waiting list. With no additional funding going to Kiwibuild either it’s difficult to see how the Government plans to tackle the housing crisis.

Advertisement - scroll to continue reading

Are you getting our free newsletter?

Subscribe to Scoop’s 'The Catch Up' our free weekly newsletter sent to your inbox every Monday with stories from across our network.

“The only major announcement for public housing had come before budget day, with the pre-budget announcement of $197 million for the Housing First Initiative for the next four years to fund 1,044 new places for long-term homeless people. With only 6,400 state homes planned for the next four years and over 11,000 families currently waiting for a state home we expected additional funding to match the current need of state housing.

“The ability for the Government to deliver true wellbeing for low income families is hampered by its Budget Responsibility Rules. Implementing the full Welfare Expert Advisory Group recommendations would have taken the Government’s debt and expenditure beyond what it currently allows itself, hindering the pace the Government can reduce poverty by.

“The Government needs to introduce a wider range of welfare reforms and invest on public housing if it is serious about the wellbeing of low-income people. This budget, unfortunately, failed to deliver on these two crucial issues.


© Scoop Media

Advertisement - scroll to continue reading
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines


Gordon Campbell: On National Spreading Panic About The Economy


The lure for New Zealand to join the AUKUS military alliance is that membership of only its “second pillar” will still (supposedly) give us access to state of the art military technologies. As top US official Kurt Campbell said during his visit to Wellington a year ago:
...We've been gratified by how many countries want to join with us to work with cutting-edge technologies like in the cyber arena, hypersonics, you can go down a long list and it's great to hear that New Zealand is interested...
More


 
 


Government: Retiring Chief Of Navy Thanked For His Service

Defence Minister Judith Collins has thanked the Chief of Navy, Rear Admiral David Proctor, for his service as he retires from the Royal New Zealand Navy after 37 years. Rear Admiral Proctor will retire on 16 May to take up an employment opportunity in Australia... More


Labour: Grant Robertson To Retire From Parliament
Labour List MP and former Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance Grant Robertson will retire from Parliament next month, and later in the year take up the position of Vice Chancellor of the University of Otago... More

Government: Humanitarian Support For Gaza & West Bank

Winston Peters has announced NZ is providing a further $5M to respond to the extreme humanitarian need in Gaza and the West Bank. “The impact of the Israel-Hamas conflict on civilians is absolutely appalling," he said... More


Government: New High Court Judge Appointed

Judith Collins has announced the appointment of Wellington Barrister Jason Scott McHerron as a High Court Judge. Justice McHerron graduated from the University of Otago with a BA in English Literature in 1994 and an LLB in 1996... More

 
 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • PARLIAMENT
  • POLITICS
  • REGIONAL
 
 

InfoPages News Channels


 
 
 
 

Join Our Free Newsletter

Subscribe to Scoop’s 'The Catch Up' our free weekly newsletter sent to your inbox every Monday with stories from across our network.