The Government is hiding behind a smokescreen and is blustering about the number of children it plans to lift out of poverty, National’s spokesperson for Children Paula Bennett says.
“National’s Family Incomes Package was projected to lift 50,000 children out of poverty on 1 April 2018. It would have given 1.2 million working Kiwis an extra $1060 per year in the hand – and, we had committed to undertake a further package in 2020 that would have had a similar impact.
“The mini Budget announced by Labour today outlines its plans to lift 88,000 children out of poverty – but by 2021.
“So, comparing apples with apples, during the same period National would have lifted about 100,000 children out of poverty, whereas Labour only plans to lift 88,000.
“Labour has reverted to type by throwing billions of dollars at poorly targeted hand-outs, including over $3000 baby bonuses that go to everyone, irrespective of whether they need it or not.
“During our term in Government, the number of kids in material hardship fell by nearly 40 per cent to 135,000 in 2016.
“Thanks to the hard work, motivation and brave decisions of thousands of Kiwi parents, there are now 60,000 fewer children growing up in benefit-dependent households.
“Statistics like that can’t just be made up. We were the first Government in 40 years to lift benefits and the results are beginning to show.
“This is yet another example of a big-spending Labour Government that just cannot execute its ambitions,” Mrs Bennett says.