web analytics

Arguing with a rightie about youth minimum wages

Written By: - Date published: 11:43 am, March 20th, 2010 - 29 comments
Categories: minimum wage - Tags: ,

With one eye firmly on the polls and an awareness that cutting wages by stealth is one thing but actually lowering wages is another, National has decided to oppose Roger Douglas’s youth minimum wage reduction bill.

That hasn’t stopped the right activists from promoting it though, so I thought it would be worthwhile having a wee post summarising the arguments on both sides:

Rightie: Youth unemployment is out of control! It’s all due to the abolition of youth rates!

Leftie: OK, first, the youth rate only ever applied to people aged 16 and 17 whereas the ‘out of control’ youth unemployment age group you’re talking about is 15-19. It’s a fair bet that most of the unemployed in this age group are 18 or 19, since most of the rest are at school.
Second, we’ve got rising unemployment thanks to a recession and a do nothing government. Who loses their jobs first when jobs are cut? The least experienced, the lowest skilled, those without a family to support (bosses are human too). Kind of describes young people, eh? In fact, youth unemployment is always significantly higher than general unemployment and you could expect youth unemployment to go up at at least the same rate as general unemployment. That’s what has happened, it is nothing to do with youth rates.

Rightie: I stopped listening at ‘OK’, all that maths stuff is phooey. Statistics can be made to mean anything, 68% of people know that. If we cut the youth minimum wage back to where it was, employers will be able to pay a wage that reflects the amount of wealth the worker produces and, so, could afford to employ more youth workers. Currently, it’s just not worth their while to employ someone who is inexperienced.

Leftie: Well, wages aren’t directly tied to productivity like you’re assuming anyway. Wages are determined by supply of labour and demand for it with a bottom constraint set by the minimum wage, not the productivity of that labour. But well since you’re just going to ignore the empirical argument, how about an argument from principle? How is it right for one person doing the same job as another to be paid less? Why should an 18 year old flipping burgers get $12.50 ($12.75 soon!) while the 17 year old beside him doing the same job gets $10? How is that right?

Rightie: Having a lower minimum wage for teenagers is exactly that a lower floor. How the hell you translate that into youths should be paid automatically at a lower rate I do not know. Once again this is about a floor not a ceiling, not an automatic rate that you must apply to teenagers.

Leftie: But isn’t the whole crux of your argument that employers are being forced to pay teenagers more than they otherwise would and so aren’t employing them at all? If reducing the youth minimum wage to a lower rate than the ordinary minimum wage wouldn’t see employers lower the wages they pay youths (and supposedly employ more of them) what’s the point? Actually, the point of minimum wages is that they increase wages at the bottom end of the scale, that’s why you righties are always opposing increases.

Rightie: Um…

Leftie: And if it’s right to lower the youth minimum wage because you think it is making them unemployable, why not apply that logic to other groups? Maori minimum wage? The logic is exactly the same.
Why not face the facts? You really just want wages at the bottom end to be nice and low so you’re business’s profit margins can be higher. 16 and 17 year olds are a soft target because they can’t vote. Then you’ll be able to use them as a source of cheap labour to hold down the wages of adults in similar jobs.

Rightie: Shut up. This conversation is boring.

29 comments on “Arguing with a rightie about youth minimum wages”

  1. Descendant Of Smith 1

    I’m also still waiting for the employer who says give me tax cuts and I’ll pay my workers more.

    Youth became unemployed because many were employed in industries hit by the recession e.g. cafes, tourism, building industry, retail.

    Most employers laid people off because there was no work. Had very little to do with wage rates.

  2. Nick C 2

    Objective as ever Marty.

    The only leftie arguement there that actually makes sense/has an element of truth is the last one, and thats an argument for lowering the overall minimum wage.

    Plus it ignores the fact that high youth minimum wage has been proven to incentivise kids leaving school early, and the argument that young people benefit more from work experience than they actually do from the money they recieve.

    • Rex Widerstrom 2.1

      Nick raises a good point… and one of the primary reasons I can’t make my mind up decisively on this issue.

      When I was a teenager I was repeatedly told I was “too young” for a job in radio (as though most DJs had done an advanced PhD in babbling). Never having been inclined to take no for an answer I tried ringing Radio Windy and asking for part time work in their newsroom. When I got the predictable response I told them I’d worked out it would cost me about $80 a week (IIRC) for the bus and train back and forth to Wainuiomata and they could have me for that.

      They agreed. Having been given a chance to show what I could do, within a short while I got more work and better pay (though not as much as they’d have had to pay a “real” journalist). But I lived at home with mum and dad and didn’t have expensive hobbies – radio was my hobby – so I could afford to do what I viewed as investing in myself.

      From that I finangled my way into being a stringer for RNZ, and by the time I left school a few years later I had two offers on the table, one from private and one from public radio.

      Whenever I’ve held a senior media position since, I’ve tried to do the same thing – create positions for young people to gain experience even if I wasn’t given the budget to do so and thus had to pay them crap money – or no money at all (yes, I have been an exploiter!!). Some of my “graduates” are now in senior positions in media themselves, in NZ and Australia.

      It was only later that I discovered the term “internships” – used extensively in US politics to give young people an entry into a profession they’d otherwise find impossible, but which often pay literally nothing.

      Where the argument falls to pieces, of course, is when someone is paid crap to work in fast food just because they’re 17. There’s no advanced skill set being learned there, and just simply having a job – any job – to plonk on your CV doesn’t I think, counteract being under-rewarded.

      So what’s the answer? A Youth Rate Tribunal to whom employers have to apply, setting out what the young people they employ will receive in experience in return for working for peanuts?!*

      I have children, two of whom are in the workforce. One is in his twenties and has children but if the other (late teens) one of them was offered an amazing opportunity to get into an industry he longed to work in and which provided real experience and challenge, but it was an unpaid internship, I’d urge him to go for it. While if he were offered a job slinging burgers for $X, even if X = more than the adult rate, I’d probably try to talk him out of it.

      Like everything else in this world, this isn’t a black/white, left/right divide… it’s just that lefties and righties want to make it so.

      (* I’m joking)

      • Descendant Of Smith 2.1.1

        “If one of them was offered an amazing opportunity to get into an industry he longed to work in and which provided real experience and challenge, but it was an unpaid internship, I’d urge him to go for it.”

        Can we assume then that you would be continuing to financially support him, house him, clothe him.

        For lots of our youth this isn’t an option and there is crass exploitation by employers of these youth.

        My son at 18 lost his job as the owner was pressured to employ his nephew by his family. The firm was small and he was a good boss but only had enough work for one of them. Forced into a choice it was inevitable that my son missed out.

        When looking for work a kitchen / bathroom place advertised for a worker. My son turned up at 7:30 in the morning to do a days trial work as requested. Boss wasn’t there so other workers gave him some work to do which he did competently until boss finally turned up at 9:00.

        Boss checked work and then offered him a months trial. Only catch was it was a month trial on no pay – he expected either the parents or the state to support him while he worked for a month for free.

        There are loads of examples like this. I’ve just used one from my own personal experience.

        At the time coincidently we were going to use the firm for doing our bathroom renovations – not only did he get told to stick his offer where the sun doesn’t shine he also lost $15,000 worth of work for his trouble.

        A youth rate tribunal could be an option but based on what I’ve seen with the process and lack of fairness around the system for underrate pay for people with disabilities I wouldn’t think it would be any good.

        • Rex Widerstrom 2.1.1.1

          I should have pointed out I was 14 when I landed that Windy job… I was annoyed because I’d started applying at 11 😀 Obviously as a kid gets older the argument becomes less valid.

          Yeah, I’d continue to support my son if he was offered an internship in the same way (and for the same reasons) I’d do so if he’d chosen to go to university.

          The type of position your son was offered is the other sort – crass exploitation with (I imagine) very little to learn.

          In Australia it’s recognised that there are perfectly valid reasons why some positions ought to be filled only by a person of Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander descent. I believe the method employed is that there’s a set of criteria which must be met. Then the job is advertised as meeting those criteria and thus restricted to applicants of only that ethnicity.

          If someone feels it’s wrongly classified, they can ask to have it reviewed.

          Perhaps we need something similar for internship / low wage but great opportunity positions versus exploitative wankers like your son’s would-be employer? A job would need to meet certain criteria before an employer was allowed to advertise it at youth rates, and anyone aggreived that it was mis-classified could complain.

          • Descendant Of Smith 2.1.1.1.1

            There is of course some existing provision for employers to take on unemployed people (limited to those getting a benefit ) for up to four weeks on a trial basis where some upskilling is needed and a Straight To Work programme to help address local skill shortages.

            In many respects there are options for employers if they wish to use them.

            Work Experience

            They could also choose to train workers up at their own cost as well.

            For those disgruntled employers they can kill two birds with one stone. Find a worker and have one less dole bludger to moan about. You know become part of the solution.

            While I’m a little uncomfortable with employers being subsidised by the tax payer and the worker only getting a benefit instead of a wage it is a mechanism that currently exists and provides protection to both the worker and the employer. Without an approved program the worker would be at risk of losing his dole – he’s not unemployed even though he’s not being paid and the employer would be at risk for a claim of wages because legally they need to pay minimum wage for work done.

            I suspect many employers are lucky their free workers don’t lodge a claim for wages through the employment court.

      • Pascal's bookie 2.1.2

        Yeah, it is tricky, but i suspect that a huge percentage of the jobs we are talking about are the ‘burger slinging’ type, rather than the internship model. Paying min wage for an intern worth his/her salt should still be a bargain.

        One wrinkle that I think accounts for a part of the rise in youth unemployment is that we are talking about min wage jobs.

        Where the job is such that it is min wage, the employer is essentially like me when I needed to buy a new TV, – price sensitive.

        So it makes sense to me that if the employer is price sensitive, and there is a lower rate for youth, then youth s/he will employ. If that price differential is removed then when choosing between a youth and another applicant, price is no longer a factor, so s/he may well opt for someone older.

        The thing to note is that the job still exists, the increase in youth unemployment from this effect is countered by a decrease in older unemployment. This is most likely to happen I suspect when jobs are scarce and employers budgets are tight, like now in other words.

        Therefore if, like Nick, we want youth to be in school rather than working in ‘dead end’ jobs, then we shouldn’t incentivise employers to choose youth over older applicants.

  3. SPC 3

    Since the USA decided to increase in May 2007 to increase the minimum wage from 5.15 to 7.50 (in 3 steps and after years with no increase at all), the right have focused on rising youth unemployment to call for a youth rate for teenagers ($5).

    They have used the recession (and thus few new jobs) to suggest that young unskilled people are not hired because of the higher MW. All to imply that if the MW was lower there would be more jobs for young people – so if people care about young people they will oppose a rise in the MW, or have them work for less.

    To those who believe there is evidence of a higher bump in unemployment of young people in this recession than would have occured without the end of the youth rate – note in the USA where there was no youth rate to begin with they claim the same thing simply because the MW was increased.

    The “evidence” is there only because in any recession the unemployment of youth goes up. It would have gone up even if there was no minimum wage, as any group dependent on new jobs being created to get into a job is vulnerable when there is a recession.

    As for the idea that there are more jobs for youth if they have a lower rate, this is only true to the extent that people 20+ are displaced by younger workers.

    In the end they simply claim a lower minimum wage means more jobs. Thus the real ambition of the right is to keep the MW at $US7.50 for another 10 years and here to reject the call for a NZ$15 rate here (12.50. 12.75, 13.00, 13.25 etc).

    If the right really cared about new jobs, they would focus on employment growth policy.

  4. SPC 4

    Nick C, young people can now access work experience while staying at school – there are programmes where this can occur and these are expanding.

    Denying people the dole till 18, means that people only have an incentive to leave school if they have a job to go to.

    So we have the right claiming on the one hand that higher wage means no jobs are vailable and on the other the higher wage means they have an incentive to leave school. The contrdiction between the two arguments makes a joke of rationale.

    If a youth rate means more low paid jobs for young people – there is incentive to leave school early – and the price is people over 18/20 without work and unable to access tertiary education because of cut-backs. Talk about the right wing being stupid, no wonder even this government saw through that nonsense and rejected the Douglas bill.

  5. Leftie: OK, first, the youth rate only ever applied to people aged 16 and 17 whereas the ‘out of control’ youth unemployment age group you’re talking about is 15-19.

    Rightie?: Actually, until 2001, the youth rate applied to those aged 16-19.

    • Ari 5.1

      Youth unemployment among the 15-19 age group started trending down slightly after 2002 until the recession began to hit, so there was no obvious impact on youth unemployment after the policy was implemented.

      • I’m not saying it made a difference, but when you’re making fun of people for not knowing the facts, it helps to be correcting erroneous beliefs with factual ones.

    • Marty G 5.2

      Completely irrelevant Graeme.

      Don’t be such a muppet.

  6. gingercrush 6

    I think the problem is you’re answering the wrong questions. If this was legislation that was going to make youth rates the same as adult. Many of the right’s arguments would be persuasive and were persuasive at the time youth rates were changed to match adult rates. I.e. that more young people would be unemployed etc..

    But to reverse youth minimum wage and have that lowered to adult was always rather nonsense. Would it open up more employment opportunities for the young? Quite possibly. One would reasonably assume some small businesses would take advantage of the fact they could employ people at a cheaper rate. But that likely wouldn’t lessen unemployment. Unemployment would remain the same only with more adults unemployed while than the young. And even then the employment opportunities would be extremely small.

    Therefore, while I have sympathies with the legislation that Roger Douglas was proposing and I wasn’t in favour of youth rates matching adults rates in the first place. A move to then change that was always going to be problematic. Both politically and practically. In the end National saw that and decided to not vote for the bill.

    • Ari 6.1

      There’s two factors to consider when setting the minimum wage:

      1) The impact on the number of people employed. A higher minimum wage decreases the incentive to use human labour, or to adequately staff more marginal businesses.

      2) The overall positive social impact of lifting the wage floor, and the “rising tide” effect it has on wages that are pegged directly or indirectly to minimum wage.

      Given that (1) can be addressed with other policy to a certain point, lowering the minimum wage to increase demand for cheap labour is usually a pretty bad idea. While I’m fine with the idea of limited exceptions to the minimum wage with sanity checks in place, measures like youth rates are trying to hit a very intricate problem with a very large hammer.

      If certain sectors have something valuable to offer to youth at rates under the minimum wage, we can consider setting up apprenticeship or internship programs, where youth can be paid less under the assumption that they are undergoing training for the duration of their employment. What we should not do, however, is excuse paying youth less than the minimum wage in cases where they do not undergo significant training during their employment- like fast food or low-level retail jobs.

      If you’re serious about youth unemployment, there are narrower and better ways to address it than lowering the minimum wage for youth workers.

  7. “Leftie: And if it’s right to lower the youth minimum wage because you think it is making them unemployable, why not apply that logic to other groups? Maori minimum wage? The logic is exactly the same.”

    Excellent idea! Better still why not do away with the minimum wage full stop. The empirical evidence shows that it causes unemployment for the affected groups, see David Neumark and William Wascher, “Minimum Wages”, MIT Press, 2008, chapter 3 for a discussion of the evidence of the minimum wage on employment, so doing away with it would be a good idea.

  8. SPC 8

    Look up wikipedia – minimum wage and see how convinced you are about the empirical evidence argument.

  9. “Look up wikipedia minimum wage and see how convinced you are about the empirical evidence argument.”

    Wikipedia???? Surely you can do better than that.

    • Marty G 9.1

      get over it Paul.

      All you want is lower wages for the lower skilled.

      have the courage to admit your own motivations.

      Repugnant as they are.

      • Paul Walker 9.1.1

        What I want is less unemployment among the lower skilled. Funny that you would think that repugnant.

      • Paul Walker 9.1.2

        What I want is less unemployment among the lower skilled. Funny you find that repugnant.

        • Marty G 9.1.2.1

          I don’t find that repugnant. I find your calls for lower wages for workers repugnant.

          Lower unemployment is only a possible side effect of the action that you call for, it’s not one that I believe would happen, and it’s not one that will always be optimal (lowering the wages of all youths to create a handful of jobs, even if it would happen, which it wouldn’t, would not be worth the combined loss)

          • Paul Walker 9.1.2.1.1

            “I don’t find that repugnant. I find your calls for lower wages for workers repugnant.”

            Demand curves slope downwards. There is a trade off, higher minimum wages with higher unemployment for the affected groups or higher employment at a lower minimum wage. Given the positives following on from getting low skill workers in to work, mainly increased experience and skills, greater employment for these groups should not be rejected out of hand.

            • SPC 9.1.2.1.1.1

              Wikipedia cites all the arguments for and against – and covers the debate between economists. Across decades to compare changing attitudes.

              You cite one work as empirical evidence and then have the gall to imply something superior to your citing one work. You should read their article – and then maybe you would sound less like a first year student.

            • Pascal's bookie 9.1.2.1.1.2

              No one is suggesting ‘rejecting it out of hand’. Your own oft repeated sources say that the effects are small, and not alwys present. Therefore it’s not a huge factor and the effects that do exist can be mitigated against by other policies.

  10. Camlon 10

    This was kind of silly of a news outlet like “The Standard”. I would certinally not start the debate that youth unemployment rates are out of control, because it isn’t. And the responses assummed right-wing people have an IQ of 50.

    However, youth minimum wage will be beneficial for youths, because it will be easier for them to get a job. It will be easier for employers to hire them for other jobs than flipping burgers. People who are 16 live at home anyway, and they could have no job and still be fine. However, by having a youth rate then that wll give employers incentives to hire youth and it will be easier for them to get some work experience.

    • Marty G 10.1

      you’ve just made half the arguments that you say Righties aren’t dumb enough to make. Check out the responses above

      • Camlon 10.1.1

        Some of the responses above is really good, so I don’t feel bad using some of the same arguments. I said that “The Standard” labal stupid opinions on right wing people. From what I saw in the article, it seems like they assume right-wing people have an IQ of 50. I feel that you can respect your opponent so much, that you can actually assumme that they have proper arguments to back up their positions.

        I mean, just look at how unserious it is.
        “Youth unemployment is out of control! It’s all due to the abolition of youth rates!”

        “I stopped listening at ‘OK’, all that maths stuff is phooey. Statistics can be made to mean anything, 68% of people know that.”

        “Shut up. This conversation is boring.”

        Politically, this is not helping either. The ones who agree are allready left wing, most of them extreme left. It’s the independents you want to convince, but then label right wing people as stupid won’t help, because then you label them stupid because they may consider voting national.

        BTW: This won’t help you in debates either, because you will soon realize that right wing people have much better arguments than what was presented in the article.

        • lprent 10.1.1.1

          You’re misinterpreting the purpose of the site.

          I suggest that you read the About. The site isn’t really about persuading people to do anything. It is primarily a forum for the left, frequently the centre, and some of the right who can tolerate dissenting opinion (plus the many other angles of the political opinions as well) to argue.

          It runs pretty much on an “agree to disagree” basis, but where people are willing to debate, listen to contrary opinions, and then attempt to refute them. This is pretty clear in the policy. One of the things that I moderate severely against is when people start claiming ‘victory’, because in politics there is usually no such thing.

          Posts are generally written by authors to be opinionated. That is what starts debate, and we like the debate to be robust within some behavioural limits. The only people that really exhibit bad behaviour here for any length of time are some of the moderators – that is what our role is…

          You should view the site as being a argument in progress…

Links to post

Recent Comments

Recent Posts

  • New Zealand First disappointed that Section 70 spouses won’t get relief
    Rt Hon Winston Peters, Leader of New Zealand First New Zealand First is disappointed that the removal of the spousal deductions has had to be delayed by the Ministry fo Social Development, due to COVID19 workload pressures. “New Zealand First has always stood for fairness when it comes to superannuation ...
    1 day ago
  • Winston Peters receives petition demanding more protection for nurses
    Rt Hon Winston Peters, Leader of New Zealand First On the steps of Parliament today the Leader of New Zealand First, Rt Hon Winston Peters received a petition from registered nurse Anna Maria Coervers, requesting an amendment to the Protection for First Responders Bill which will ensure the legislation also include registered ...
    1 day ago
  • Week That Was: Getting our economy moving
    It's been a busy seven days as we start to rebuild New Zealand together. From delivering extra support for small businesses, to investing in our artists and arts organisations, to cutting red tape on home DIY projects, we're rolling out our plan to get the economy and New Zealand moving ...
    2 days ago
  • Winston Peters: If protests condoned ‘why are we not at level 1?’
    Deputy Prime Minister Winston Peters says alert level 2 restrictions have to be discussed during today's Cabinet meeting. Thousands gathered across the country, including at Parliament, yesterday for Black Lives Matter marches where social distancing and mass gathering rules were flouted. Mr Peters said the breaching of Alert Level 2 rules at ...
    2 days ago
  • Northland rail work to help create regional jobs
    Rt Hon Winston Peters, Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of State Owned Enterprises KiwiRail’s Northland rail upgrade steps up another gear today and will help Northland recover from the impacts of COVID-19, State Owned Enterprises Minister Winston Peters says. The Government is investing $204.5 million through the Provincial Growth Fund to ...
    3 days ago
  • Green Party statement on the death of George Floyd
    “Today and every day we stand in solidarity with George Floyd’s family, friends and community who feel pain and fear about his untimely death at the hands of Minneapolis police”, said Green Party Co-leader and Māori Development spokesperson Marama Davidson. ...
    3 days ago
  • Lake Brunner’s Mount Te Kinga to go Predator Free
    Fletcher Tabuteau, Parliamentary Under-Secretary for Regional Economic Development Hon Eugenie Sage, Minister of Conservation The West Coast forests of Mount Te Kinga at Kotuku Whakaoho/Lake Brunner are the latest predator free project to receive Government funding, announced Minister of Conservation Eugenie Sage and Under Secretary for Regional Economic Development Fletcher ...
    5 days ago
  • Green Party welcomes crucial financial support for creatives
    The Green Party says new government support for creatives and artists is a vital lifeline for a sector struggling to survive the COVID crisis. ...
    6 days ago
  • Strongest ever water reforms mean swimmable rivers within a generation
    The Green Party says major freshwater reforms announced today provide the strongest ever protections of our waterways, to help ensure the next generation can swim in the rivers of Aotearoa. ...
    6 days ago
  • Greens work to secure inquiry into Wild West student accommodation sector
    The Green Party has begun the process for a Select Committee inquiry into student accommodation, which has been exposed during COVID-19 as an under-regulated sector that straddles students with unfair debt. ...
    1 week ago
  • New Zealand joins global search for COVID-19 vaccine
    Rt Hon Winston Peters, Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of Foreign Affairs Hon Megan Woods, Minister of Research, Science and Innovation Hon Dr David Clark, Minister of Health Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters, Research, Science and Innovation Minister Megan Woods,  and Health Minister David Clark today announced a COVID-19 vaccine strategy, ...
    1 week ago
  • Budget 2020: Five things to know
    Budget 2020 is about rebuilding together, supporting jobs, getting business moving and the books back into the black. It’s an integral part of our COVID-19 economic response, and our plan to grow our economy and get New Zealand moving again. Here’s a quick look at the five top things you ...
    1 week ago
  • Coalition Government approves essential upgrades on Ōhakea Air Base
    The Coalition Government has approved $206 million in essential upgrades at Ōhakea Air Base.  Defence Minister Ron Mark said the money would be spent on improving old infrastructure. He said safety issues would be addressed, as well as upgrades to taxiways, accommodation and fresh, storm and waste water systems. "This ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Attributable to the Rt Hon Winston Peters
    Rt Hon Winston Peters, Leader of New Zealand First “I am not persisting with this case just for myself, but for all people who have had their privacy breached. Privacy of information is a cornerstone of our country’s democracy. Without it our society truly faces a bleak future. We now ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Forestry Minister Shane Jones moves to protect sawmills
    Forestry Minister Shane Jones has introduced a Bill to Parliament that he says will "force more transparency, integrity and respect" for the domestic wood-processing sector through the registration of log traders and practice standards. The Forests (Regulation of Log Traders and Forestry Advisers) Amendment Bill had its first reading in ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Green MP joins international call to cancel developing countries’ debt
    Green MP Golriz Ghahraman is joining over 300 lawmakers from around the world in calling on the big banks and the IMF to forgive the debt of developing countries, in the wake of the COVID crisis. ...
    3 weeks ago
  • Forestry Minister Shane Jones swipes back at billion trees critics
    Forestry Minister Shane Jones says concerns that carbon foresters are planting pine trees that will never be harvested are the result of "misinformation". "The billion tree strategy is an excellent idea, unfortunately from time to time it's tainted by misinformation spread by the National Party or their grandees, hiding in scattered ...
    3 weeks ago
  • Budget boost for refugee families a win for compassion
    The Green Party welcomes funding in the budget to reunite more refugees with their families, ensuring they have the best chance at a new life in Aotearoa New Zealand. ...
    3 weeks ago
  • How Budget 2020 is supporting jobs
    This year’s Budget is about rebuilding New Zealand together in the face of COVID-19. Jobs are central to how we’re going to do that.There’s a lot of targeted investment for employment in this year’s Budget, with announcements on creating new jobs, training people for the jobs we have, and supporting ...
    3 weeks ago

  • Free period products in schools to combat poverty
    Young people in Waikato will be the first to have free access to period products in schools in another step to support children and young people in poverty,” Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said.  During term 3, the Ministry of Education will begin providing free period products to schools following the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    10 hours ago
  • Response to charges in New Plymouth
    The Minister of Police Stuart Nash has issued the following statement in response to charges filed against three Police officers this morning in the New Plymouth District Court. “Any incident involving a loss of life in Police custody is taken very seriously. The charges today reflect the gravity of the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    12 hours ago
  • Temporary changes to NCEA and University Entrance this year
    Further temporary changes to NCEA and University Entrance (UE) will support senior secondary school students whose teaching and learning have been disrupted by COVID-19. “The wellbeing of students and teachers is a priority. As we are all aware, COVID-19 has created massive disruption to the school system, and the Government ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    14 hours ago
  • Extended terms for the directors of the Racing Industry Transition Agency
    Minister for Racing Winston Peters today announced that the terms for the directors of the Racing Industry Transition Agency (RITA) have been extended to 30 June 2021. Due to the COVID-19 crisis the transition period has been extended to ensure that the Racing Industry Bill can complete its progress through ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    15 hours ago
  • Healthy Homes Standards statement of compliance deadline extended
    The deadline for landlords to include detailed information in their tenancy agreements about how their property meets the Healthy Homes Standards, so tenants can see the home they are renting is compliant, has been extended from 1 July 2020 to 1 December 2020.  The Healthy Homes Standards became law on 1 July 2019. The Standards are ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Criminal Cases Review Commission board appointments announced
    Justice Minister Andrew Little today announced details of further appointments to the Criminal Cases Review Commission. “I am pleased to announce Paula Rose QSO OStJ as Deputy Chief Commissioner for a term of five years commencing on 15 June 2020,” said Andrew Little. “I am also pleased to announce the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Release of initial list of supported training to aid COVID-19 recovery
    The Targeted Training and Apprenticeships Fund (TTAF) will pay costs of learners of all ages to undertake vocational education and training The fund will target support for areas of study and training that will give learners better employment prospects as New Zealand recovers from COVID-19 Apprentices working in all industries ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Emission trading reforms another step to meeting climate targets
    The Emissions Trading Scheme (ETS) will finally start to cut New Zealand’s greenhouse gas pollution as it was originally intended to, because of changes announced today by the Minister for Climate Change, James Shaw. The changes include a limit on the total emissions allowed within the ETS, rules to ensure ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Queen’s Birthday Honours highlights Pacific leadership capability in Aotearoa
    Minister for Pacific Peoples Aupito William Sio says the Queen’s Birthday 2020 Honours List provides an abundance of examples that Pacific people’s leadership capability is unquestionable in Aotearoa. “The work and the individuals we acknowledge this year highlights the kind of visionary examples and dedicated community leadership that we need ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Govt backing horticulture to succeed
    The Government is backing a new $27 million project aimed at boosting sustainable horticulture production and New Zealand’s COVID-19 recovery efforts, says Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor. “Our horticulture sector has long been one of New Zealand’s export star performers, contributing around $6 billion a year to our economy. During and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Applications open for forestry scholarships
    Applications have opened for 2021 Ngā Karahipi Uru Rākau – Forestry Scholarships, which will support more Māori and women to pursue careers in forestry science, says Forestry Minister Shane Jones. “I’m delighted Te Uru Rākau is offering Ngā Karahipi Uru Rākau – Forestry Scholarships for the third year running. These ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Excellent service to nature recognised
    The Queen’s Birthday 2020 Honours List once again highlights the dedication by many to looking after our native plants and wildlife, including incredible work to restore the populations of critically endangered birds says Minister of Conservation Eugenie Sage. Anne Richardson of Hororata has been made an Officer of the New ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Wetlands and waterways gain from 1BT funding
    The Government will invest $10 million from the One Billion Trees Fund for large-scale planting to provide jobs in communities and improve the environment, Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor and Forestry Minister Shane Jones have announced. New, more flexible funding criteria for applications will help up to 10 catchment groups plant ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • New fund for women now open
    Organisations that support women are invited to apply to a new $1,000,000 fund as part of the Government’s COVID-19 response. “We know women, and organisations that support women, have been affected by COVID-19. This new money will ensure funding for groups that support women and women’s rights,” said Minister for ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Govt supports King Country farmers to lift freshwater quality
    Healthier waterways are front and centre in a new project involving more than 300 King Country sheep, beef and dairy farmers. The Government is investing $844,000 in King Country River Care, a group that helps farmers to lift freshwater quality and farming practice, Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor announced today. “Yesterday ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Libraries to help with jobs and community recovery
    A major funding package for libraries will allow them to play a far greater role in supporting their communities and people seeking jobs as part of the economic recovery from COVID-19. “Budget 2020 contains over $60 million of funding to protect library services and to protect jobs,” says Internal Affairs ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Support for arts and music sector recovery
    A jobseekers programme for the creative sector and four new funds have been set up by the Government to help our arts and music industry recover from the blow of COVID-19. Thousands of jobs will be supported through today’s $175 million package in a crucial economic boost to support the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Legislative changes to support the wellbeing of veterans and their families
    Minister for Veterans Ron Mark has welcomed the First Reading of a Bill that will make legislative changes to further improve the veterans’ support system.  The Veterans’ Support Amendment Bill No 2, which will amend the Veterans’ Support Act 2014, passed First Reading today. The bill addresses a number of ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Christ Church Cathedral – Order in Council
    Views sought on Order in Council to help fast track the reinstatement of the Christ Church Cathedral  The Associate Minister for Greater Christchurch Regeneration, Hon Poto Williams, will be seeking public written comment, following Cabinet approving the drafting of an Order in Council aimed at fast-tracking the reinstatement of the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • New Zealanders’ human rights better protected in new Bill
    The law setting out New Zealanders’ basic civil and human rights is today one step towards being strengthened following the first reading of a Bill that requires Parliament to take action if a court says a statute undermines those rights. At present, a senior court can issue a ‘declaration of ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Deep concern at Hong Kong national security legislation
    Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters today reiterated the deep concern of the New Zealand Government following confirmation by China’s National People’s Congress of national security legislation relating to Hong Kong. “New Zealand shares the international community’s significant and long-standing stake in Hong Kong’s prosperity and stability,” Mr Peters said. “New Zealand ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Government invests in New Zealand’s cultural recovery
    Thousands of artists and creatives at hundreds of cultural and heritage organisations have been given much-needed support to recover from the impact of COVID-19, Prime Minister and Minister for Arts, Culture and Heritage Jacinda Ardern announced today. “The cultural sector was amongst the worst hit by the global pandemic,” Jacinda ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Better protection for New Zealand assets during COVID-19 crisis
    Key New Zealand assets will be better protected from being sold to overseas owners in a way contrary to the national interest, with the passage of the Overseas Investment (Urgent Measures) Bill. The Bill, which passed its third reading in Parliament today, also cuts unnecessary red tape to help attract ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Cleaning up our rivers and lakes
    Setting higher health standards at swimming spots Requiring urban waterways to be cleaned up and new protections for urban streams Putting controls on higher-risk farm practices such as winter grazing and feed lots Setting stricter controls on nitrogen pollution and new bottom lines on other measures of waterway health Ensuring ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Record year for diversity on Govt boards
    The Government is on the verge of reaching its target of state sector boards and committees made up of at least 50 percent women, says Minister for Women Julie Anne Genter and Minister for Ethnic Communities Jenny Salesa. For the first time, the Government stocktake measures the number of Māori, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • New appointments to the Commerce Commission
    The Commerce and Consumer Affairs Minister and Broadcasting, Communications and Digital Media Minister, Kris Faafoi, has today announced the appointment of Tristan Gilbertson as the new Telecommunications Commissioner and member of the Commerce Commission. “Mr Gilbertson has considerable experience in the telecommunications industry and a strong reputation amongst his peers,” ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Historic pay equity settlement imminent for teacher aides
    The Ministry of Education and NZEI Te Riu Roa have agreed to settle the pay equity claim for teacher aides, Education Minister Chris Hipkins announced today. This will see more than 22,000 teacher aides, mostly women, being valued and paid fairly for the work they do. “Teacher aides are frontline ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Govt delivers security for construction subcontractors
    Subcontractors will have greater certainty, more cashflow support and job security with new changes to retention payments under the Construction Contracts Act says Minister for Building and Construction, Jenny Salesa. A recent review of the retentions money regime showed that most of the building and construction sector is complying with ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • New Zealand and Singapore reaffirm ties
    Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Singapore Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong have marked the first anniversary of the New Zealand-Singapore Enhanced Partnership with a virtual Leaders’ Meeting today. The Enhanced Partnership, signed on 17 May 2019, provides the framework for cooperation across the four main areas of trade, defence and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • JOINT STATEMENT BY THE PRIME MINISTERS OF NEW ZEALAND AND THE REPUBLIC OF SINGAPORE ON THE FIRST AN...
    On 17 May 2019, New Zealand and Singapore established an Enhanced Partnership to elevate our relations. The Enhanced Partnership – based on the four pillars of trade and economics, security and defence, science, technology and innovation, and people-to-people links – has seen the long-standing relationship between our countries strengthen over the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Government investment supports the acquisition of new Interislander ferries
    State-Owned Enterprises Minister Winston Peters has welcomed KiwiRail’s announcement that it is seeking a preferred shipyard to build two new rail-enabled ferries for the Cook Strait crossing. “This Government is committed to restoring rail to its rightful place in New Zealand. Bigger, better ships, with new technology are yet another ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Better protection for seabirds
    Better protection for seabirds is being put in place with a new National Plan of Action to reduce fishing-related captures, Fisheries Minister Stuart Nash and Conservation Minister Eugenie Sage announced today.   The National Plan of Action for Seabirds 2020 outlines our commitment to reduce fishing-related captures and associated seabird ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Milestone in cash flow support to SMEs
    Almost $1 billion in interest-free loans for small businesses More than 55,000 businesses have applied; 95% approved Average loan approx. $17,300 90% of applications from firms with ten or fewer staff A wide cross-section of businesses have applied, the most common are the construction industry, accommodation providers, professional firms, and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Government protects kids as smoking in cars ban becomes law
    Thousands of children will have healthier lungs after the Government’s ban on smoking in cars with kids becomes law, says Associate Minister of Health Jenny Salesa. This comes after the third reading of Smoke-free Environments (Prohibiting Smoking in Motor Vehicles Carrying Children) Amendment Bill earlier today. “This law makes it ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Parliament returns to a safe normal
    The special Epidemic Response Committee (ERC) has successfully concluded its role, Leader of the House Chris Hipkins said today. The committee was set up on 25 March by the agreement of Parliament to scrutinise the Government and its actions while keeping people safe during levels 4 and 3 of lockdown. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Foreign Minister makes four diplomatic appointments
    Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters today announced four diplomatic appointments: New Zealand’s Ambassador to Belgium, High Commissioners to Nauru and Niue, and Ambassador for Counter-Terrorism. “As the world seeks to manage and then recover from COVID-19, our diplomatic and trade networks are more important than ever,” Mr Peters said. “The ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • New Bill to counter violent extremism online
    New Zealanders will be better protected from online harm through a Bill introduced to Parliament today, says Internal Affairs Minister Tracey Martin. “The internet brings many benefits to society but can also be used as a weapon to spread harmful and illegal content and that is what this legislation targets,” ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Mycoplasma bovis eradication reaches two year milestone in good shape
    New Zealand’s world-first plan to eradicate the cattle disease Mycoplasma bovis is on track the latest technical data shows, says Agriculture and Biosecurity Minister Damien O’Connor. “Two years ago the Government, DairyNZ and Beef + Lamb New Zealand and industry partners made a bold decision to go hard and commit ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • New payment to support Kiwis through COVID
    Further support for New Zealanders affected by 1-in-100 year global economic shock 12-week payment will support people searching for new work or retraining Work programme on employment insurance to support workers and businesses The Government today announced a new temporary payment to support New Zealanders who lose their jobs due ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • PGF reset helps regional economies
    The Provincial Growth Fund will play a vital role in New Zealand’s post-COVID-19 recovery by creating jobs in shorter timeframes through at least $600 million being refocused on projects with more immediate economic benefits, Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones has announced. The funding is comprised of repurposed Provincial Growth ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago