Social Development


Strong families, thriving communities and a growing economy are the essential ingredients for a successful society.

People are better off in paid employment than on welfare, so getting Kiwis back to work will be the central goal of a National Government.

You can read our Social Development & Investment Policy Factsheet here.

We all face challenges in life, and National supports a strong safety net to assist New Zealanders in times of need. While some of us need a little help to get back on our feet, others need more assistance.

National will:

  • Empower parents with a funding entitlement of $3000 to allocate as they choose between whatever services they believe best meet their needs and the needs of their child during the crucial first 1000 days.

  • Get New Zealanders into work with incentives for businesses to hire more staff (JobStart), cash support for Kiwis who want to start a new business (BusinessStart) and incentives to retrain and reskill people who have lost their jobs (SkillStart).

  • Ensure our welfare system is a strong safety net that’s focused on supporting and encouraging people to get back into work.

  • Invest $31 billion on intergenerational transport infrastructure, $4.8 billion on world-class education infrastructure, and $1 billion on internet and communications infrastructure, a package that will create work for thousands of Kiwis.

  • Reinstate our ground-breaking Social Investment Approach to social spending, to invest in areas that will have the biggest positive impact on social outcomes over the long term.

  • Improve the reach of Whānau Ora to communities where it is not yet provided or more difficult to access, so that communities throughout New Zealand can benefit from the tailored support it provides.

National’s pioneering Social Investment approach – using data and evidence to understand needs, and targeting support to those who are most at risk – is the most effective, long-term response we can take as a country to improving lives.

We will restart this vital programme of work to tackle the root causes of disadvantage, ensuring that social spending is focused on targeted interventions that keep our young people on the path to success, and get adult New Zealanders back into the workforce.

You can read our Social Development & Investment Policy Factsheet here.