18 Feb 2024
The Government has failed to deliver on its promise to lift 100,000 children out of poverty by 2020, National’s Spokesperson for Child Poverty Reduction Louise Upston says.
“Just like every other grand, transformative promise Labour has made, they have completely failed to address child poverty. Labour isn’t even close to lifting 100,000 children out of poverty.
“In fact, more children are living in poverty now than when Labour took office. One in every five children in New Zealand is now growing up in a benefit-dependent home, an increase of 36,000 children since 2017.
“Housing isn’t getting any more affordable under Labour’s watch either, with the latest Child Poverty Related Indicators Report showing no improvement in housing affordability. This is a direct result of Labour’s failed housing policies.
“On top of that, Labour has overseen the worst cost-of-living crisis in a generation which is hitting lower income families the hardest.
“The Government’s only solution is to use the benefit system to try to make living in poverty marginally less miserable.
“It’s not kind to consign people to a life on welfare. The best and only long-term path out of child poverty is having a parent in work.
“To make serious inroads into child poverty, we need to get parents off benefits and into work and independence through targeted interventions delivered in partnerships with local communities.”