Welcome to Poverty Watch, a weekly update on the National government’s lack of response to the urgent and growing issue of poverty in NZ.
National used to talk about “the underclass”, but talk is all they ever did. During their four years in power poverty and inequality have increased (a Waikato University professor says that poverty is our biggest growth industry). Report after report after report has condemned the rate of poverty in this country, and called on the government to act. In a recent summary of the government’s targets and goals John Armstrong wrote: “Glaringly absent is a target for reducing child poverty”…
In relevant news this week: Labour re-ignited the debate on child poverty when David Shearer gave an excellent speech on education, including the promise of free food in low decile schools. The Greens started Champions for Children – check it out and sign up.
National responded with complete denial of the issues, saying that “the government is already doing enough to help families feed their kids”. If that is the case then why are 40,000 kids fed by charities and up to 80,000 going to school hungry? Organisations working with the poor say that Key is in poverty ‘la la land’.
Poverty Watch always ends with the following list, the National government’s response to rising poverty in NZ:
• National has not yet set any target for reducing poverty