Boots Theory: Numbers are meaningless when families are living in cars

Written By: - Date published: 10:59 am, October 5th, 2014 - 137 comments
Categories: cost of living, Economy, employment, housing, jobs, Media, minimum wage, poverty - Tags: , , , , , , , ,

(Originally posted at Boots Theory. You can follow Stephanie on Twitter.)

Housing affordability was an issue in the election – but the discussion was derailed by arguments about the intricacies of capital gains tax and exactly how many hundreds of thousands of dollars constitutes “affordable” house prices.

This is the real story, which is now getting some post-election coverage in the Herald.

Salvation Army Manukau community ministries director Pam Hughes said some families were now paying more than 70 per cent of their incomes on rent, but could not keep up payments and came to her service in crisis.

“We are seeing an increase in families in vehicles. Families in cars have been increasing over the last three or four months, simply because there isn’t enough affordable accommodation for them,” she said.

The Tuuu family – mum, dad and their six children – have been living in a van for a week because they cannot find a house. …

Tamasailau Tuuu, his wife and their children, aged from 15 to 3-months-old, were doubling up with another couple and their three children in a three-bedroom house after their landlord sold their own rented home in Clendon, South Auckland, two months ago. But their friends asked them to move out.

“She was worried about her tenancy, and the neighbours were complaining about my baby crying at night, and the house was overcrowded and her kids needed their own privacy,” Mrs Tuuu explained.

That’s right – before they had to start living in their car, the eight members of the Tuuu family were sharing a three-bedroomed house with five other people.

Tamasailau Tuuu is a fulltime worker.

Meanwhile, on the Herald’s economy pages, it’s all about the numbers, and how “there’s something for everyone” in a recent Statistics NZ report on income:

A defender of the status quo can point to a 6.2 per cent rise in the average household income from all sources over the year to June 2014. A critic of the status quo can point to a rise of 1.7 per cent in median hourly earnings for wage and salary earners over the same period, or just 0.1 per cent after adjusting for inflation. The year before median hourly earnings had risen 3.5 per cent.

There is an interesting discussion to be had about the way numbers can be used (or manipulated) one way or another depending on the argument you’re pushing. In the run-up to the election, National were trotting out numbers all over the place – more tertiary students than ever before (don’t mention population growth)! Wages the highest they’ve ever been (ignore inflation)!

But there’s something obscene about the way the economic story gets framed: the figures on a page, the points on an index, the number of dollars someone can swap for a number of different-coloured dollars.

I’m sure the following statement will raise sneers; the right love to paint the left as silly ingenues who don’t understand big, serious economics. But I cannot comprehend a worldview which says “all is well, for the numbers tell us so” while families are living in cars, workers are losing their jobs, and children are dying from preventable diseases.

More and more people I know – comparatively well-off people – have being speaking out post-election about setting up automatic payments to charity organisations, or emailing journalists who write stories like the one above to offer direct assistance to the people whose plight makes it into the media. It’s a compassionate response. It does some real good. But it’s also a sign that we have fundamentally failed as a society.

Private charity isn’t even an ambulance at the bottom of a cliff. It’s a bandaid over a gaping wound. It can’t even begin to cover the damage caused by the decades-long erosion of our social welfare system. It does nothing to prevent that damage from happening in the first place. The only thing that does is a strong social welfare system, which treats people in need with dignity and respect, instead of suspicion, and is motivated by real success – not the numbers of people the Minister can claim “have moved off benefits”.

When we only talk about economic numbers and measure our success in percentage points and turnover, we erase people. And when we can’t even make sure every person has a home and can feed their kids, those numbers are meaningless, and continuing to use them is a crime.

137 comments on “Boots Theory: Numbers are meaningless when families are living in cars”

  1. vto 1

    Yep, there is a dearth of humanity in our political and social discourse at the moment and it is getting worse. In evidence, see the support for John Key.

  2. cogito 2

    Good article. However, the discussion too often gets framed in terms of large Polynesian families living in South Auckland.

    • Paul 2.1

      Mind the Gap by Bryan Bruce and Nigel Latta’s the Haves and Have Nots focuses on a variety of folk struggling in Key’s NZ.
      Too many NZers willing to turn away.
      47% of voters selfishly put their own tax cuts and GST gains above the need of The poor and vulnerable.

      • Maui 2.1.1

        The election is tailor made for middle-class new zealand. They all vote, the have-nots are to worried about trying to survive.

      • Hanswurst 2.1.2

        Perversely, it would seem that many voters (wittingly or unwittingly) put other people’s tax cuts and GST gains above the need of the poor and vulnerable.

  3. b waghorn 3

    That article turned up on my face book and one of the comments from a Maori falla was ‘but they are still pumping out kids’ every one has a right to have children but surely birth control education must be part of breaking the cycle.

    • “still pumping out kids” is such a compassionate way to talk about human beings. 🙄

      I fully support having better education and access to contraception for people who choose it, but it would be lovely if we could just talk about the rights of children to be warm, safe and healthy without implying that poor people should be forced to make the reproductive choices we’re comfortable with.

      • Richard 3.1.1

        Access to contraception is widely and freely available. This is a western democracy not Albania.

        One thing I have learned in my life so far is to never mess with a ladies ovaries.

        We are all different with different dreams and mums quite frankly have dreams of two kids, and dreams of many and big families. I for one will never interrupt any womans dreams of her family.

        just saying some things seem to off limits.

        • BM 3.1.1.1

          When you expect tax payers to pick up the tab, that’s when it becomes an issue.

          • Draco T Bastard 3.1.1.1.1

            When a society fails to support their people having children is when that society has moved onto the path of its own destruction.

          • jeff 3.1.1.1.2

            just like ACT party and United get a big hand out from {fuck John Key} that’s when it becomes a tax payer issue issue.

        • Access to contraception is widely and freely available.

          It really, really isn’t. And if it were, it would still be incredibly gross to force people to take it just because you don’t like their choices.

          • BM 3.1.1.2.1

            So you have no problem with people breeding and popping out kids that they can’t afford and then expecting the tax payer to supply them with the money to raise their children.

            Why is that?

            • blue leopard 3.1.1.2.1.1

              If the people who can afford it don’t do it, then maybe the people who do want children should be valued for the service to society that they are providing?

              There seems to be something very wrong with a society that ‘disallows’ those that want something as fundamental as having children from doing so.

              Where money is increasingly becoming the measure for whether someone is valued or not – perhaps those raising children should be paid as much as those in the financial sector – both roles are are important to our society as it is organized right now.

              Shouldn’t raising children be as valued as calculating the daily exchange rate?

              Just playing around with ideas here, what do you think?

              • BM

                With people living a lot longer combined with the greater competition for available jobs and the diminishing supply of natural resources I think a lot more thought needs to go into population control.

                Last thing we need is women popping out kids because they have no other purpose in their lives.

                • blue leopard

                  With people living a lot longer combined with the greater competition for available jobs and the diminishing supply of natural resources I think a lot more thought needs to go into population control

                  If that is so, then why do we continue to allow immigration?

                  Last thing we need is women popping out kids because they have no other purpose in their lives.

                  This sentence implies that having the aim to have children is not a great one. Lots of people will claim it is their greatest joy. So you are aiming at a society that debars something that many claim to be up there with their most fulfilling and joyous experiences.

                  • BM

                    Unless you have something to offer NZ in the way of skills or money then you shouldn’t be allowed to immigrate to NZ.

                    Why we have a quota for Islanders is crazy beyond belief.

                    As for the people should be allowed to do whatever they want because they get joy from it.
                    Sure, just don’t expect others to pay for your “fun”.

                    • blue leopard

                      I didn’t say people “should be allowed to do whatever they want”.

                      I was commenting that there is a problem with a society that debars some from something that (a) many people will state is their most fulfilling and joyous experience and (b) that raising children needs to be valued as providing a service to society.

                      If you take these two factors into account, then you have to question a society that is pivoted in such a manner that this activity is as good as debarred for some. It is that way because some people are advantaged and others are disadvantaged by the way things are organized. It is this way because of systemic failure.

                      So why not fix the problem rather than spending time whinging about those who are affected -disadvantaged and suffering – the most from this systemic failure?

                    • One Anonymous Bloke

                      Yes, don’t expect others to pay for your pollution, your gambling businesses, your corruption. Now you’ve set the benchmark of hate let’s apply it to you first.

                    • blue leopard

                      That is a very salient point, OAB

                    • Murray Olsen

                      Do you pay to spread your racist hate via this blog, Bloody Moran? Why should a bigoted hateful thing like you expect others to pay for your views to be propagated?

              • MrV

                The other side of that coin however is that many people do want kids, just feel that they can’t afford to start a family at this particular time, so maybe wait a few years to save, get a suitable house etc.
                At the same time these people are expected to pay for those who have many more kids than they can afford.

                Where is the fairness in that?

                • BM

                  I think this is what really rankles people and leads to all the bene hate.

                  • blue leopard

                    People need to be more grateful for their fortunate circumstances and less judgemental about others who are not so fortunate.

                    People who hold such views have no idea what this does to communty spirit and how it alienates and creates more problems.

                    We are losing a lot of good things in this country because people are so fixated on judging and putting down those who are less fortunate than themselves.

                    I really don’t know why those who are comfortable want to spend so much time on cupidity and resentment toward those who aren’t!

                    It truly makes no sense to me.

                  • One Anonymous Bloke

                    The hate is already there, nourished by the low-IQ and low levels of contact with out-groups.

                    Right wingers are motivated by hate, that’s the problem.

                    • blue leopard

                      It is starting to look that way and this is not good for our country 🙁

                    • MrV

                      Full of hyperbole aren’t we? “motivated by hate”, what does that even mean?
                      Just as offensive as me saying left-wingers are motivated by spending other peoples money on themselves.

                    • One Anonymous Bloke

                      Your hate speech is offensive, certainly, and it’s the misery you cause that counts. Scum like you, blaming misfortune on the unfortunate, don’t deserve oxygen let alone democracy.

                      Shall we read the list of deaths from preventable infectious diseases together?

                    • infused

                      lol. oab lecturing on hate speech. ironic.

                    • One Anonymous Bloke

                      I respond aggressively to callous bigotry, and you?

                      Deny and exacerbate it.

                • blue leopard

                  @ MrV

                  If you are in a position to save and afford to have children, you are actually in fortunate circumstances. Why would you not simply be thankful that you are?

                  Why would you not see that is unfair that there are some in this country that if financial concerns were the sole criteria for having children, they would have to not have children.

                  It is due to poor society organization, after-all, that there are some that are so much poorer than others.

                  • MrV

                    I’m not saying people shouldn’t have kids – far from it. But you must accept that some people have too many kids.
                    I’m all for taxpayer support for people in hardship, however if they are up to child #5, the question needs to be asked why they aren’t helping themselves?
                    You can insult all you like but this is how many people view it.

                    • blue leopard

                      @MrV

                      I actually was taking your comments seriously and making every attempt to word my response politely and not be rude, so please point out where I insulted you?

                      You actually are implying that some people shouldn’t have children, perhaps this isn’t deliberate on your part and is just that you don’t realise quite how badly paid some jobs are in New Zealand in relation to costs?

                      I am quite certain that there are many people in New Zealand who really don’t realise the increased difficulty in social mobility in this country and assume that it is as easy as it once was. Sadly they then judge those that are struggling and get nasty toward them and this only compounds the problem.

                      This lack of awareness is because certain people in this country haven’t been in poor circumstances, and don’t realise the variety of government policies introduced over successive years that are making it increasingly difficult to get out of poverty traps for a lot of New Zealanders, because it hasn’t affected them directly.

                      If only people would start listening and educating themselves so they would realise these difficulties exist and are increasing and we might actually get a government elected who would improve conditions for all.

                    • anker

                      I was one of five kids, back in the day when people (even those on the lowest wages) earned enough to support five kids and the state built good state houses to grow up in.

                    • blue leopard

                      @ Anker,

                      It is so sad the direction this country has gone in 🙁

                • One Anonymous Bloke

                  The fairness is that despite your disgusting attitudes, you are still allowed to live in New Zealand. It’s a mistake: you deserve far worse.

                  • Richard

                    on behalf of OAB

                    HA, did you hear that slap folks I thought Taupo just erupted.

                    +infinity

            • Richard 3.1.1.2.1.2

              @BM

              Did I say that or are you putting words in my mouth. I said freedom of choice.

              I said it was somewhere I would not like to go.

              As for the poster who said contraception is not widely available. Every town has a chemist, Men can buy condoms there and in a lot of pub toilets..well there are dispensers in UK pubs n clubs.

              Plus any woman can go to their Dr can they not.

              Or are Dr’s not widely available. Are chemists a figment of my imagination.

              @BM educate. Don’t legislate.

      • b waghorn 3.1.2

        i certainly am not advocating any of the rubbish bm and his mates are posting . I just think church’s need to stop with the anti contraception garbage , educate people about good choices and blokes need to grow some and get the snip

      • Psycho Milt 3.1.3

        “still pumping out kids” is such a compassionate way to talk about human beings.

        No, it’s a realistic way to talk about human beings, who are after all human beings, not rabbits, and can reasonably be expected to apply their brains to their circumstances. No compassion is due to people who’ve produced six children – the last thing this planet needs is exponential population growth among humans. If these six children are suffering, their parents get first place on the list of culprits.

    • mpledger 3.2

      But they were financially secure when they had the children. It was when their house they rented was sold that their lives fell apart.

      And they have income, the father is working full time. It’s a pretty poor state of things if a family can’t afford to rent a three bedroom house on one full time income.

  4. b waghorn 4

    I agree the kids should ‘t suffer but politicians need to no what voters think

  5. Harry 5

    Why should my dads taxes pay for these people’s house. I’m 10 years old and my dad is saving for a house.

    • Richard 5.1

      Admin? He’s ten?

      • fender 5.1.1

        Comments are judged on content rather than the age of the commenter, even “BM” who seems younger than “Harry” is allowed to comment.

        I just hope Harry and his dad get to live in their own house before either of them reach retirement age.

        • Richard 5.1.1.1

          Like a parent I’m just concerned he’s

          A found the Standard
          B commented on a topic over his head
          C doesn’t need to be concerned about this sort of thing yet
          D Hasn’t the worldy experience to judge the ins and outs of poverty or the issue
          E is probably a mischevious 50 year old national party supporter causing trouble
          F Should be asking his dad to explain it not us.
          G just don’t like kids they tend to write horrible crap when someone tells them off, online, being an IT engineer in the past.
          H He’s 10 I mean that’s not even teenage yet.
          I hasn’t his dad told him not to talk to strangers
          J I think I’ve made up enough concerns now as to why I asked for an Admin to make a decision on a ten year old posting here.

          K now I’ve made my points if it’s ok for kids to join in serious debates where robust discussions are tolerated and encouraged, I think i’ll leave the Standard as I will not sit idly by or condone a ten year old reading swear words and adult conversations he should not be listening too. When I was growing up I was off to bed when the adults talk got adult. Call me old fashioned but principles are principles.

          • Richies McClaw 5.1.1.1.1

            You’re quite the killjoy aren’t you. There are far worse things out there in the internet than a political discussion on the standard. I was first interested in politics when i was his age. I was reading and comprehending political science journals around the time i was 12. Maybe you shouldn’t assume that he doesn’t have the ability to understand and reason as you don’t know anything about him. As for the swear words, they are just words, you underestimate the kinds of things that kids hear and know these days. Hiding kids away from the language isn’t teaching them anything, teaching them to be polite and respectful is the key.

    • Tautoko Viper 5.2

      Harry, if it was your mum and dad that couldn’t afford to rent or buy a house and if you and your family had to live in a car or someone else’s garage, how would you feel about no one helping you out by helping your family get into a house?
      Life is about sharing and helping others less fortunate than yourself.

    • blue leopard 5.3

      @ Harry,

      Because your dad, like all of us, would benefit from living in a country where everyone gets their basic living needs met.

      This country has enough resources for all people living in it, there is something wrong that some people can’t afford their basic living costs.

      Distribution is required to ensure that the rich don’t just keep getting richer at the expense of everyone else.

      • Olwyn 5.3.1

        everyone gets their basic living needs met

        If, at the beginning of this experiment with the “market economy” we had made substantive human rights, such as the right to earn a living and the right to secure dwelling, non-negotiable, with the level of commitment that was shown on the nuclear ships issue, we would not now be in this mess. Such a stance would have posed an obstacle that drove other policies and actions down different paths than those that have been taken. For example, if you don’t want to pay taxes to keep people, then you must employ people. If you want to employ people, you must do something productive, etc.

        At the moment, with the media vilification of Cunliffe, the promotion of Stuart Nash, and the continuous meddling in the business of left-wing parties by right wing activists, I fear that we will end up with no one to tackle these problems who has access to the levers by which they can be tackled effectively.

        • blue leopard 5.3.1.1

          “…with the level of commitment that was shown on the nuclear ships issue, we would not now be in this mess.”

          +100 Basically that is the crux of the matter.

    • Draco T Bastard 5.4

      1. Those taxes would also help you and you family get a house
      2. Back many years ago the government made low interest mortgages available to first home buyers. This means of supporting people was removed so that a few people could make more profit from private banks.

    • infused 5.5

      Man. Do you guys get trolled this easily?

    • One Anonymous Bloke 5.6

      Harry, the level of poverty in any society is a choice that society makes.

      Citizenship comes with responsibilities as well as rights.

      This isn’t an abstract political game: we know exactly what happens when society doesn’t care for its weakest citizens, and to put it bluntly in the narrow terms in which you frame your question, that costs more.

      Read some history.

  6. Dialey 6

    No sex, no booze, no smokes, nothing that gives simple pleasure to the down and outs – that’s what I feel the Nacts and their supporters believe, going from many of their comments in public fora. And the logical extension of such thought: eugenics – and we all know where that leads.

    • Murray Olsen 6.1

      I don’t think they’ll go for eugenics. They like having the poor around, and the poorer and more desperate the better. They want a country like Brazil was, where an ugly fuckwit can get laid for buying someone the equivalent of a sausage roll. They want to be able to get their car washed for $2, or their house cleaned for $5. That makes them feel even more superior.

  7. adam 7

    I think this is the issue that should be shedding labour party supporters like droves. They have proven themselves to nothing more than wet liberals on this issue. When John A Lee, Mickey Savage, Harry Holland and other addressed this issue, they built houses to kept working people alive, and ultimately offered them hope.

    Now we see a whole lot of hot air, and no traction. Yes the Tories are worse – in their fantasy land of market solutions. And many of that ilk show utter contempt to religious views – ahh the irony.

  8. Foreign waka 8

    Large families are part of the social structure in the pacific and also some Asian countries. The idea is that children start earning money early with schooling taking a backseat. Girls are married off to the highest bidder. Whilst this might not be true for all the cultural undercurrent still plays a role. NZ does not accommodate that kind of infrastructure (or does it?). Hence cultures collide.
    I belief we need to make sure that every child is educated and has an opportunity to use their full potential to achieve. This is the only way to brake the cycle. Naturally, housing is part of the equation and some form of reassurance that children have a home should be the aim of any civilized society. This has less to do with left, right or double cross stitch but everything with human decency.

    • cogito 8.1

      There should be incentives around assisted resettlement in the Pacific Islands for families with large numbers of kids and/or who are unable to find suitable housing/work. They should be encouraged to return to their home countries, with the help of a resettlement grant.

      • Foreign waka 8.1.1

        Hmm…. this is a tempting argument when fear of the future is overwhelming. Belief me, I am as human as the next person looking for simplistic solutions.
        When I step back and focus on trying to look at solution that really will make a difference, it always comes back to education.
        Most of the Islands and poor Asian countries do not have the infrastructure and/or political will to accommodate talent. Coupled with a very outdated approach to gender it just adds to the already very thin spread of ladies in the executive.
        To break the cycle and provide the means for change that carries through we need to learn to share. It’s difficult to convince the NZ public that poor people who are perceived to be a drain on the social purse should be assisted. In the end this is when the monkey jumps into the water – so to speak. Are we prepared to put the money where the mouth is? It is basically a humanitarian action. I may add that this is valid for any person in such a situation. NZ will most likely benefit to have the same people who have taken up opportunities establish the business connections NZ needs today and in the future. We just need to stop being greedy.

      • adam 8.1.2

        cogito, sneezed up a cropper.

        I say keep the pacifica at least they know what honour and respect mean. Oh and other concepts like family and equality. That one above seems to have lost it with some seriously fruit cake ideas they be espousing. How about we all chip in for an airfare to the Ukraine, so you can join your loopy brothers in arms.

        • cogito 8.1.2.1

          @Adam

          What utter BS.

          You have not provided one single reason why the idea is unfair, unworkable or unwise.

          • BM 8.1.2.1.1

            I think it’s a great idea.
            Give them a couple of years worth of bene payments, they’d live like kings back in the islands.

            The simpler island life style would probably suit them so much better as well.

            • One Anonymous Bloke 8.1.2.1.1.1

              Oh look, a National Party representative spewing racist hate. Situation normal.

            • Foreign Waka 8.1.2.1.1.2

              There is a difference between simplicity and being simple. Sending people back to the islands is an intolerant and shortsighted way of looking at the issues at hand. NZ has a political agreement with many of the island nations and is therefore also obliged to assist. As for the human equation, it will not eliminate the underlying causes of the problem that a section of NZlanders, that is growing in numbers with every year is experiencing day after day. Were not talking about beneficiaries but people who work 3 jobs to make end meet and/or retirees who cannot afford adequate care, dying undignified deaths. This is not something that can’t be swept away with simple statements. History shows us that societies with out of balance dynamic is something that can be observed when societies are dying.

            • Richard 8.1.2.1.1.3

              If your not a Maoriori, perhaps we can all chip in to give you a plane flight back to the UK then. Or the islands if your a Maori.

              Don’t forget we are ALL immigrants to this fine country. It was not populated until the 1600’s roughly

              • Murray Olsen

                The Moriori were not an earlier people who arrived in Aotearoa before Maori. This theory was debunked years ago. Kupe is thought to have arrived around 925 and Maori had inhabited the whole of Aotearoa within the next few centuries. Where does your date of 1600 come from?

                • Richard

                  Oh from an article about a found early canoe up northland, carbon dated around 1500 1600 from the corking. Latter canoes were dugout style but due to the construction it was a mixed type indicating a construction based on an island style where tree’s were not as big and they had to plank them. I made a connection. My ignorance thanks for the head up .

                  I stand corrected.

            • anker 8.1.2.1.1.4

              BM @ 8.1.2.1.1. That must be what JK meant when he talked about a brighter future…………now I see. RAther than try and solve social issues and create a decent society, ship ’em out!

            • anker 8.1.2.1.1.5

              BM @ 8.1.2.1.1. That must be what JK meant when he talked about a brighter future…………now I see. RAther than try and solve social issues and create a decent society, ship ’em out!

          • anker 8.1.2.1.2

            Umm………..then prey what do you do with Pakeha and Maori in the same position? I.e those on pathetically low wages, trying to find housing when there has been a massive market failure of providing decent homes?

            • blue leopard 8.1.2.1.2.1

              Send ’em to an island and preferably one that is sinking due to the lifestyles those who want them deported and whom support policies that cause wage disparity, live.

              (A firing squad would be cheaper – but not as easy an idea to sell, methinks.)

              • Richard

                I almost read that wrong Blue leopard. I had to re read it to get what your saying. Carefully on the grammer mate.

                as in clarify who the em is your referring too

                • blue leopard

                  My comment is in response to Anker’s comment. Who do you think ’em is referring to?

                • blue leopard

                  There ain’t nuthink wrong with having to read one of my comments twice, the more you read, the better you understand the subtly and depth contained within them.

                  One should be able to work out who the ’em is by looking at whose comment I was responding to. This was to Anker’s comment, which contained a question, so it should have been clear that I was kindly responding to that question.

                  Perhaps I should have put an /irony or /sarc tag on, but sometimes, when a comment’s tone is so obvious, I leave it to the reader’s intelligence to work it out.

                  Responding by correcting grammar grammatically incorrectly is rather a dull thing to do, I suggest in the future, you think of something more witty.

                  Summary: could do better, try harder next time.

      • weka 8.1.3

        “This has less to do with left, right or double cross stitch but everything with human decency.”

        Might want to tell the right that. And the neoliberals.

        • Foreign Waka 8.1.3.1

          Human decency is something that is thought and passed on like a cultural attitude. NZ by and large used to be quite good at that. What has changed? And whatever has changed seem to being so overbearing now?
          Its easy to say that it is all the rich people – these days anybody who is not on some form of benefit seem to be rich- but isn’t it so that the traditions have changed? That many of the customs such as curtsey, charity and good will has been transformed to a hierarchical structure that does not follow the traditions of equality but follows a political pattern last observed when monarchies reigned and tribal traditions mix with it so well? Are we going backwards?

          • weka 8.1.3.1.1

            I’m not saying that it’s all the rich. Plenty of neoliberals across the board (the rich get special mention of course, because of their privilege and power).

            We are 3 decades in from the 80s. There is a cultural entrenchment now that will be very hard to reverse. Yes, we are going backwards.

      • Richard 8.1.4

        @cogito

        Racism much. When the sea rises and wipes out whole islands with tidal surges and massive storms, you’ll be donating to support all those you helped return to the islands won’t you. You’ll be on board the Herc dropping of medical and food supplies to the dying and survivors.

        Sure you will. I’m alright jack stuff everyone else scenario is it.

        • cogito 8.1.4.1

          @Richard

          I was suggesting a voluntary programme for those who wished to take it up.
          Your comment is entirely lacking in balance, rationality and intelligence.

          If you were living in a car with six kids, I bet you would jump at the opportunity for a fresh start, closer to family, and with some transitional support.

          This is not a stupid idea. The only likely limiting factor would be the high numbers of people who would probably want to take advantage of the programme, which would outstrip the ability of the Islands to absorb them!

          • Richard 8.1.4.1.1

            and every rights group on the planet would be hating on you for being a perceived racist. Every opposed media outlet would roast your , sounds like huts.

            Sometimes it’s not about policy, and the motives for it your thinking, it’s about how it can be used against you. You’d be lucky not to be crucified, if you were in power with god himself at the helm.

            • cogito 8.1.4.1.1.1

              The ones who should be crucified are WINZ for stopping people’s benefits when they go back to see family in the Islands.

              • Richard

                Relativity mate, I went to Albania to see family whilst on Invalids, they carried on paying my IB for the month I was away. There’s a common sense time limit before it stops and hey I figured at that time it was about spot on.

                Um I think it may have changed a little on the time limit but from experience if your ok in manners, and the Winz persons reasonable, you have a good and justified reason for travelling there is no issue.

                It’s not the rules, life is about attitudes when dealing with government employee’s treat them with respect they are reasonable with you. A lot of people dig their own graves if you know what I mean.

                Educate them don’t ostracise them.

      • Murray Olsen 8.1.5

        South Africa used to do something like that, but they didn’t have any islands handy. They sent surplus workers to bantustans instead.
        I’ve got a better idea. Why don’t you go and live somewhere else?

        • cogito 8.1.5.1

          @Murray arrogant Olsen

          I’ve got a better idea – you give these people a roof in your house.

  9. Blue 9

    I was going to post this link when the post-election brouhaha died down:

    http://www.theguardian.com/society/2014/sep/21/linda-tirado-poverty-hand-to-mouth-extract

    It’s a great read for those who keep banging on about ‘poor choices’ etc. to justify their lack of basic human decency.

  10. Andrew Welsh 10

    Some people live in cars and some people live in Castles, some people earn millions and some earn nothing, some people die young and some die old, welcome to the real world that has been around since the year dot.

    • Chooky 10.1

      yup….and unless everyone is given a chance and hope in a civil society …ie affordable housing, work opportunities , education equality of opportunity ….the have nots will eventually turn on those who denied them their rights as human beings

      …and that is also a surety of the “real world” that you talk about “since the year dot” ..or as history shows it is not pretty

    • Foreign waka 10.2

      Yes, and with ignorance will stay at year dot and wont move. As with any living things; if it ain’t moving it’s dead.

    • anker 10.3

      Andrew Walsh @ 10 Except NZ in the 1960’s -70’s was a decent place ie. more egalitarian. Those were much better times.

      I grew up in a “poor” family, but we had a warm dry house and food, good health care and a great education.

  11. coaster 11

    Its a shame some of the homeless couldnt relocate to areas where there are cheap houses. There are places on the west coast where houses are closer to 100k , sadly theres no work. Alot of these problems seem to exist only in auckland and christchurch.

    • adam 11.1

      Where there is some work, but no houses.

      • MrV 11.1.1

        Now we are getting somewhere away from the bile spewed above:
        For answers we must consider.

        a) Local & Central govt policies for the last 30yrs have caused rampant housing speculation by stifiling supply.
        b) Nature of the tax system, ie taxing the common mans income and business profits but not speculative capital returns and blatant rent seeking or transaction costs.
        c) Current monetary policy, and the underlying assumption of 2% inflation as benign (hint it isn’t)

        • One Anonymous Bloke 11.1.1.1

          It will never happen as long as your dog whistle smears have currency.

          • MrV 11.1.1.1.1

            No, it will never happen whilst you believe in pointing the finger at people, accusing them of being motivated by hate, whilst thinking your poo is pure white.

            • One Anonymous Bloke 11.1.1.1.1.1

              Exhibit a: Pointing the finger at people

              Exhibit b: these people are expected to pay for those who have many more kids than they can afford.

              Where is the fairness in that?

              Yes, I’m afraid it’s true, here we have yet another snivelling hypocrite who hates on people then whines at getting smacked down.

              They shouldn’t be allowed to breed.

    • Richard 11.2

      There’s a place called Tokoroa and other towns nearby. Houses are down to 55k, Central Nth Island, all within 1 hour of 3 major cities. Rotorua, Taupo, Hamilton, Work everywhere.

      Quite attractive if correctly promoted.

      Publicity campaign would put a real dent in the housing problem and first home buyer problems in Auckland real fast. Sometimes I get the feeling vested interest are keeping the status quo for ulterior motives of a financially sinister nature. 😉

      I am not a conspiratorial theorist, it just crossed my mind.

  12. Foreign Waka 12

    Why is everybody concentrating on the “problem” of the poor and not on the manufactured situations created by the wealthy? Scared? No courage? What?

  13. Redelusion 13

    chooky equal opportunity does not mean equal outcome

    Where does state responsibility end, if it takes 250k to raise a child, you are on minimum wage, you understand house prices are not cheap in auckland, why in gods name do you have 6 kids, You have through your own decisions sentenced yourself and your family to poverty. No state has the resources to simply accomodate this poor decision making, no matter how generous. As this family are on minimum wage, they should be looking at the provinces, one they will find housing cheaper and two as they are on minimum wage there will be no real wage differential thus they will be better off form a dispoable income perspective. sitting around in a car waiting for the state to solve their problem is a dead end street

    • Chooky 13.1

      @ Redelusion “equal opportunity does not mean equal outcome”…who said this?…this is beside the point

      Every New Zealand child deserves a warm house to live in, parents who have employment for a reasonable standard of living, free high quality state education including tertiary education

      ( there will still be differences in outcome but at least it will be a more egalitarian society with more equal opportunity)

      Other countries can do this…why cant we?…in New Zealand we used to do this as anker has pointed out

      Instead we have overseas speculators buying up scarce New Zealand housing stock and raising the price of housing so it is unaffordable for Young New Zealanders. We have state education being underfunded and run down and increasingly privatised. We have tertiary education where young New Zealanders are forced into tens of thousands of dollars of debt even for a basic degree ..We have very bright young New Zealanders barred from postgraduate degrees because their parents arent wealthy enough to support them and they cant even get a student loan for postgrad studies. We have people on inadequate wages to support their children and rents and good food

      ….(we have desperate people living in cars and sheds…and they would not be there if the state was committed to helping them…we need state houses and not new motorways)

    • weka 13.2

      some things you haven’t taken into consideration –

      family and other social support available where they currently live

      less jobs in the provinces

      can’t afford to move

      contraceptive failure

      cultural differences in the value of children

      they were renting, lost their home when the landlord sold it, and now due to the housing crisis in Auckland they can’t find something they can afford. Paying 70% of your income on rent is a housing problem, not a family size problem.

      • Scott1 13.2.1

        If they are already in the car they could just drive it out to the provinces a. And tell their boss he isn’t paying enough. At the moment they seem to be effectively subsidising an employer who is underpaying them (if he isn’t paying enough to allow a family to live in the area that he needs them to live in). People have to start making those sorts of choices to force the wages up and relieve housing pressure in the absence of other changes).

        • One Anonymous Bloke 13.2.1.1

          If they are living in the car fuel costs might just be an issue, and it’s entirely possible the car has no rego or warrant.

          You’ll find employment policy is the government’s responsibility, your fantasy of rational actors in a free market is a fantasy: the evidence is in.

          • weka 13.2.1.1.1

            Plus what are they supposed to live on while they look for a new job?

            “your fantasy of rational actors in a free market is a fantasy:”

            Pity that imagination can’t be used to think through real life circumstances, but I guess that’s what happens when ideology trumps reality (aka fantasy).

  14. mike 14

    So who in their right mind with no expectation of more than an average wage has 6 kids. I stopped at 4 because new i wouldnt be able to support more, so why should I have to support someone too stupid to work this out!

  15. Cave Johnson 15

    I’ve been thinking about the CGT in relation to rentals.
    It could reduce the rental stock, to the temporary advantage of first home buyers, and to the long term disadvantage of renters (those who cannot muster a deposit).
    It could cause a slump in house building.
    It could make it harder for a bach owner to sell their bach and buy another one of the same value, since significant capital is lost due to real estate fees and CGT, which does seem to interfere with personal freedom to some extent.
    I’ve never aspired to own a rental, despite urging from some folks, partly because of the way people delightedly tell me their tenants are paying their mortgage for them.
    .
    The nett effect partly depends what you spend the revenue on.
    If you were going to introduce it I expect it would be best to bring it in at a very low rate initially so as to minimise disruption. e.g. 5%.
    .
    But my view for now is that a financial transaction tax would be better.

    • Scott1 15.1

      All taxes cause distortions. If the selling of the bach is seen as an interference with your personal freedom consider the extreme interference you experience every time you buy something with GST on it or pay PAYE.

      The question of house building comes down in part to what the bottle neck is for development. I think it is probably about suitable land being opened up and to an extent administrative hurdles for building but probably not return on capital. Businesses are probably likely to undervalue capital gains compared to other costs a thy would be risk adverse and they can offset expenses against those gains.
      So in the hypothetical scenario where company tax rates dropped on the sector and cgt went up the sector would probably significantly increase building as a result.

      Financial transaction taxes are an issue because thy could distort at very low levels due to the efficiency of the financial market. even a tiny tax might cause big distortions..

  16. Brutus Iscariot 16

    Flags should be raised for both the Left and Right by an article like this, particularly honing in on the family with six children who are finding themselves struggling.

    The Right will be concerned because of the fiscal drag it can impose on the rest of society, when parents are unable to provide for their children and thus the state is required to step in.

    The Left, particularly the Green left, should be aghast at this due to principles of sustainability. It is a truism that the planet’s capability of sustaining compound growth of both population and pollution output simply is extremely close to reaching its limits.

    Children that are born into our society should receive every opportunity to become happy and productive/enlightened citizens. To be honest though, in the 21st century, having six children is a crime against humanity. Parties from across the spectrum MUST come together to find ways to discourage and prevent this.

    • karol 16.1

      The best way to reduce the number of children people have is to eliminate poverty – there’s a pattern that has occurred across history. People in poverty tend to have more children than those who don’t.

      • Brutus Iscariot 16.1.1

        That’s circular though. Children produce poverty produce more children produce more poverty. In that sense you will always be chasing your tail.

        The economy could also collapse for extrinsic reasons (e.g resource shortages, conflict) and at that point you could have MORE people in poverty.

        If you want to short-circuit that process somewhere, the easiest point is the number of kids people have.

        • karol 16.1.1.1

          Mate, the reality is, the underlying factors are poverty. Blaming the victims for and expecting them to change, when the underlying conditions don’t is futile, nasty and unnecessary.

          Give everyone a living income, and see things improve. That’s the shortest and most effective route to change.

          • One Anonymous Bloke 16.1.1.1.1

            Futile, nasty, unnecessary, and sadistic. Once authoritarians get a taste for hurting people, they can’t stop.

            • Brutus Iscariot 16.1.1.1.1.1

              Viewing everyone as a victim strips them of their agency.

              Isn’t that approach quite authoritarian?

              EDIT: one person’s living income is another person’s poverty. As a DINKY i require far less to live on than someone with a family. The question is how to reconcile this?

              • One Anonymous Bloke

                If I were viewing everyone as a victim you’d have a point. I’m not: I’m viewing you as a sadist, intent on doing harm for your own satisfaction.

                The way to reconcile this is to diminish and undermine your influence by any means necessary.

                • Brutus Iscariot

                  Alrighty then…

                  • One Anonymous Bloke

                    I suppose you might simply be a malevolent busybody, unwittingly revealing your anti-social need to judge and rule the lives of others.

                    Or perhaps just a whining wingnut, exploring another way to pack a sad at having to pay your taxes.

                    So long as your fact-free drivel has political currency however it’s best to assume you’re a sadist.

        • Foreign Waka 16.1.1.2

          OK, there are very few families with 6 kids to start with. It has also been researched at ad nauseam that the better off the parents the less children are born. In fact, this is a great concern in developed countries as at the current birth rate will not even be enough to replace the current population. This in turn will lead to impoverishment and …….. yes, you guessed it – more kids. Isn’t nature a funny thing?

  17. Wensleydale 17

    And in other news, Alex Swney has just been charged with millions of dollars worth of tax evasion. Those rich people, eh? They could be abseiling down a mountain of cash all day long, and they’re still after just that little bit more…

    “Bastard IRD! I could afford a second Porsche if I didn’t have to pay sodding taxes!”

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  • Let’s Hear It For Up-Close-And-Personal, Hard-Copy Democracy!
    The Best Way: Missing from the on-line voting debate is any reference to the voting system that produces turn-out figures ranging from 77 to 93 percent of registered voters. The voting system used to collect and count the votes cast in our parliamentary elections. The system that involves citizens making ...
    1 week ago
  • 10/10: World Day Against the Death Penalty
    Today, October 10, is the world day against the death penalty. Out of 195 UN member states, 84 still permit capital punishment. Today is the day we work to change that. This year's theme is children. Having a parent sentenced to death or executed causes long-term trauma and stigmatization which ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Talking Freer Lives: a Marxist gender-critical perspective from Australia
    Among the great new bunch of political friends we have been making recently is the excellent Australian-based Marxist gender-critical site, Freer Lives.  So we asked the comrade who set up that blog to write something for Redline on the blog, himself, his analysis of the rise of gender politics and ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • Government spin accepted by union leadership
    by Don Franks  The Auckland City Mission is struggling with a 40 percent increase in demand for food parcels this year. A total of 23,020 were needed by June. Last month Missioner Chris Farrelly told the Herald the “cupboards are bare” and without an emergency food drive, he can’t see ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • Forbidden Thoughts
    by The Council of Disobedient Women   Massey Wellington Student Association had a sit-in today. Imagine a sit-in. On a campus. Against a women’s rights meeting. Did the ’60s really happen or did we fucking dream it? They gathered in the student square, an echo chamber. Sitting on soft pillows ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • Much love to my loyal Ukrainian readership
    For some reasons, my post about the mystery message from inside the Downing Street bunker seemed to catch people's attention.  Quite a lot of hits from NZ (unsurprisingly) and the USA (a bit more puzzlingly, but hi there, USAians!!) and 76 views from the Ukraine.I've celebrated my Ukrainian readers in ...
    1 week ago
  • Another day of bonkers GNUmours (again, sorry)
    First, almost a score of Labour MPs seem to have sent a letter to the EU basically begging them to accept a deal - any deal - just so Britain can get the Heck on with Brexiting instead of being trapped in limbo:
    To avoid no deal, deliver on the ...
    1 week ago
  • Labour vs working class immigrants – again!
    by Phil Duncan In 2016 the National-led government suspended the Parent Visa Category, through which migrants were able to bring their parents into New Zealand.  Since then over 5,700 people have been in immigration limbo, stuck on the visa wait list. Labour is now bringing back the scheme.  Well, sort ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • Speak Up for Women press statement: on Massey University and Feminism 2020
    The following was released yesterday (Tues, October 8) by the women’s liberation organisation Speak Up for Women. On 23 September Speak Up For Women announced that we would be holding an event at the Massey University Theaterette in Wellington. The event is called Feminism 2020. The intention of the event ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • Farmers support dirty rivers
    The government is currently consulting on plans to improve freshwater quality. So naturally, farmers oppose it:South Taranaki farmers are preparing to fight proposed national freshwater changes that some fear will bankrupt them. The Government's proposed National Environment Standard on Freshwater Management, released in September, rated the Waingongoro River as one ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • No-one cares about local government
    Yesterday was the last day for (reliably) posting your vote away in local body elections. Turnouts are mostly much lower than the equivalent time last year (Palmerston North is down 2.3%), and so naturally people are pushing their online-voting snake oil again. Because the online census worked so well, lets ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • The political ghosts of eugenics may matter more than the genetic
    This essay, on the political legacy of the eugenics movement, by Kenan Malik was originally published in the Observer on 6 October 2019, under the headline ‘The spirit of eugenics is still with us, as immigrants know to their cost’. Birth control. Intelligence tests. Town planning. Immigration controls. It’s striking how ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • “Surplus” again
    Another year, and the government has announced another enormous government "surplus". And just like last year, its nothing of the sort. When we have people homeless and sick and hungry, when we have schools and hospitals still falling down, when we have underpaid public servants and infrastucture unmaintained or unbuilt, ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Inside the Downing Street bunker
    James Forsyth at The Spectator (I know, I know) has tapped one of his contacts inside Number Ten for an insight into the Johnson administration's thinking and strategy.It is fascinating, unsettling and quite, quite mad.  Some key points:Negotiations have stalled and the Johnson administration are keen to blame the EU: ...
    1 week ago
  • Taking Control Of The Nation’s Story.
    Fatal Contact: With the arrival of captain James Cook in October 1769, the islands of what would become New Zealand ceased to be the preserve of Polynesian navigators and settlers and became a part of both the world’s map and the world’s history.THE MAORI NATIONALIST assault upon the historical meaning ...
    1 week ago
  • Are GNUs extinct?
    Another round of tactical talks about forming a Government of National Unity have come to nothing with the Liberal Democrats still refusing countenance putting Jeremy Corbyn into Downing Street:Opposition talks on Monday made little headway over when to try and vote down Boris Johnson's government and who might succeed him as ...
    1 week ago
  • Labour chickens out again
    When the government was elected, it promised to lead the way on electric vehicles, and specifically to make the government vehicle fleet emissions-free where-practicable by 2025.They lied:There are 15,473 vehicles in the government fleet and only 78 are electric. When the coalition Government came into power in late 2017, the ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Transgender extremism, violence at work against feminist meeting at British Labour Party conference
    by Nick Rogers The debate around the meaning of sex and gender made an appearance at this year’s British Labour Party conference in Brighton. Women’s Place UK – an organisation that questions the demand that biological males who self-identify as woman should have access to women’s spaces, to all-women shortlists, ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • Rebelling in Wellington
    Yesterday I went down to Wellington to participate in the Extinction Rebellion protest. Its part of the latest global wave of XR actions, with actions happening all over the world. Some of those protests are massively disruptive: in Canada, XR is blocking major bridges, stopping people from getting to work. ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • ‘The Workshop’ – Report: Talking about Poverty and Welfare Reform: A Guide to Strategies that ...
    The Workshop is a charitable trust for public good. The Workshop undertake research to find ways of communicating that will build support for the solutions that work to solve complex social and environmental problems. See their Report on Talking about Poverty and Welfare Reform below. ...
    Closing the GapBy Tracey Sharp
    2 weeks ago
  • Exclusive language
    What is language? We generally assume that it a facility unique to humans, allowing us to share what’s in and on our minds. We can tell of our plans, our past exploits, our knowledge. It also allows us to lie. And yet there are vast numbers of people we can’t ...
    SciBlogsBy Michael Corballis
    2 weeks ago
  • April 2018 – Submission to the NZ Govt Tax Working Group
    You can read our submission HERE ...
    Closing the GapBy Tracey Sharp
    2 weeks ago
  • 2018 – Submission to the NZ Government Tax Working Group
    Read our submission here ...
    Closing the GapBy Tracey Sharp
    2 weeks ago
  • Guardian: Poll shows DISASTER for Corbyn and the End of Times
    The Guardian - ever eager to forewarn of doom and disaster on the left - are leading with a new poll from Opinium, which puts the Conservatives 15% clear of Labour.Con 38% +2Lab 23% -1Lib Dem 15% -5Brexit 12% +1Green 4% +2This isn't good news, and it would be very ...
    2 weeks ago
  • How prostitution became the world’s most modern profession
    Being and Being Bought (Spinifex Press, 2013) by Kajsa Ekis Ekman  A synopsis and commentary of Chapters 1-2 by Daphna Whitmore Ekman, a Swedish journalist and critic, brings together a Marxist and feminist analysis of prostitution and surrogacy in this groundbreaking book She opens the discussion with a definition of ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    2 weeks ago
  • Clever legal fellow on Scottish challenge to Brexit
    I make no claims to having much legal knowledge,  so I defer to those trained in this area.I am very much enjoying this twitter stream from m'learned friend in Edinburgh, deciphering the legal arguments around the Scottish court challenge to Boris Johnson, based on the charmingly obscure principle of Nobile ...
    2 weeks ago
  • An Open Letter From Closed Minds.
    Ivory Folly? The University of Auckland’s Vice-Chancellor, Professor Stuart McCutcheon, upheld the right of the radical nationalist group, Action Zealandia to exercise their freedom of speech – not matter how distasteful that speech might be. A wiser community of students and scholars would have nodded their agreement and moved on. ...
    2 weeks ago

  • New awards celebrate fisheries sustainability
    The Minister of Fisheries is calling for entries for a new public award to celebrate innovation in our seafood sector. “I have established the Seafood Sustainability Awards to recognise and celebrate those throughout industry, tangata whenua and communities who demonstrate outstanding dedication and innovation towards the sustainability of New Zealand’s ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 hour ago
  • More progress for women and we can do more
    Minister for Women Julie Anne Genter welcomes leaders in the private sector taking action on closing their gender pay gaps to ensure a fairer workplace for all New Zealanders. Ms Genter today launched a new report, Addressing the gender pay gap and driving women’s representation in senior leadership, from the Champions for ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 hours ago
  • Proposals to curb environmental damage help our coasts and the oceans
    Government Ministers today welcomed the release of a marine environment report highlighting the four key issues affecting our oceans, estuaries and coastlines.  The release underlines the importance of government proposals to combat climate pollution, ensure clean freshwater, protect biodiversity, make land use more sustainable, and reduce waste and plastic.    Environment ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    16 hours ago
  • New mental health facility for Waikato
    The Government has approved funding for a new acute mental health facility for Waikato which will provide better care and support to people with mental health and addiction issues. Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Health Minister Dr David Clark announced the $100 million project to replace the aging Henry Rongomau ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    21 hours ago
  • 500 new te reo Māori champions in our classrooms
    The Government is making progress on its goal to integrate te reo Māori into education by 2025, with over 500 teachers and support staff already graduating from Te Ahu o te Reo Māori,  Associate Education Minister Kelvin Davis announced today. Kelvin Davis made the announcement at an awards ceremony in Waikanae today, for ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    23 hours ago
  • Minister James Shaw welcomes 2018 Census first release
    Statistics Minister James Shaw has welcomed the first release of 2018 Census data. The first release of data today, 23 September, includes key data on population, regional growth, the number of homes and the size of different ethnic groups in New Zealand. Data from the 2018 Census will support the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    23 hours ago
  • Driving transparency, ethics and accountability in government use of algorithms
    Minister for Statistics James Shaw today announced a public consultation on a proposed algorithm charter for government agencies. The charter has been developed by the Government Chief Data Steward in response to growing calls for more transparency in government use of data. Computer algorithms – procedures or formulas for solving ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    23 hours ago
  • New Zealand and the Netherlands working together on climate change
    Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor, Climate Change Minister James Shaw and visiting Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte co-hosted a business roundtable in Auckland this morning focused on working together to address climate change.  “The Netherlands is an important partner for New Zealand. We share a strong agricultural history. Sustainable agribusiness and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    23 hours ago
  • Protecting fairness for workers and businesses
    The Government is taking action to build an inclusive economy where more of us receive our fair share at work and businesses can compete on great products and services, not undercutting wages and conditions, Immigration and Workplace Relations and Safety Minister Iain Lees-Galloway says. Two consultations launched today seek feedback ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Indigenous Freshwater Fish Bill Passes
    The future for New Zealand’s threatened indigenous freshwater fish looks brighter with the passing of the Conservation (Indigenous Freshwater Fish) Amendment Bill in Parliament today said Minister of Conservation, Eugenie Sage. “Until now, our freshwater fish legislation has been 20 years out of date. We have lacked effective tools to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Kiwis to take part in world’s biggest earthquake drill
    At 1.30pm tomorrow, hundreds of thousands of Kiwis will join about 65 million people around the globe in ShakeOut, the world’s biggest earthquake drill. The annual drill is to remind people of the right action to take during an earthquake which is to Drop, Cover, Hold, and to practise their ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Rising wages and low inflation supporting Kiwis
    Kiwis are benefiting from higher wage growth and low inflation under the Coalition Government. Stats NZ data out today shows the rise in the cost of living remains low, as annual Consumers Price Index (CPI) inflation fell to 1.5% in September from 1.7% in June. “The low inflation comes as ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • NZ economy strong amid global headwinds
    New Zealand’s economic strength and resilience has been recognised in a major update on the state of the global economy. The IMF’s latest World Economic Outlook released overnight shows a reduced global growth forecast over the next two years as issues like the US-China trade war and Brexit take hold. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Keeping New Zealanders safer with better counter-terrorism laws
    Justice Minister Andrew Little has today introduced a new Bill to prevent terrorism and support the de-radicalisation of New Zealanders returning from overseas. The Terrorism Suppression (Control Orders) Bill gives the New Zealand Police the ability to apply to the High Court to impose control orders on New Zealanders who ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Improved succession and dispute resolution core of Ture Whenua changes
    A Bill that proposes targeted changes to simplify the processes for Māori land owners when engaging with the Māori Land Court has had its First Reading today. “The approach taken by the Government is to ensure that the protection of Māori land remains a priority as we seek to improve ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Speech to CTU Biennial Conference
    Let me first thank all the new unionists and members in the room. There is nothing more important to improving people’s working lives than people making the decision to care, to get on board and help, to take up the reins and get involved. Congratulations to you. You bring the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Minister ensures continued Whenuapai flight operations
    Minister of Defence Ron Mark has signed a certificate exempting the activity of engine testing at Whenuapai Airbase from the Resource Management Act 1991. The Act gives the Minister of Defence the power to exempt activities for the purposes of national security.  The certificate will mean the recent Environment Court ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • NZ joins Coalition of Finance Ministers for Climate Action
    Finance Minister Grant Robertson has announced New Zealand will join the Coalition of Finance Ministers for Climate Action while attending APEC meetings in Chile. The objective of the 39 member Coalition is to share information and promote action to tackle climate change. It was formed in April this year, in ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • CTU speech – DPM
    Ladies and gentlemen, NZCTU President Richard Wagstaff, members of respective unions – thank you for the invitation to speak to you today. This might be preaching to the choir, but the importance of trade unions in New Zealand’s historical arch is difficult to understate. And it is my belief that ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Police Association Annual Conference
    "Let’s start by acknowledging that it has been a huge year. " Police Association Annual Conference James Cook Grand Chancellor Hotel Wellington Nau mai, haere mai. Tēnā koutou, tēnā koutou, ka nui te mihi, ki a koutou katoa. President of the Police Association, Chris Cahill; Members of the Association and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • New Zealand announces a further P-3 deployment in support of UN sanctions
    Minister of Foreign Affairs Winston Peters and Minister of Defence Ron Mark have announced the New Zealand Government’s decision to again deploy a Royal New Zealand Air Force P-3K2 (P-3) maritime patrol aircraft to support the implementation of United Nations Security Council (UNSC) resolutions imposing sanctions against North Korea. New ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • New Zealand deeply concerned at developments in north-east Syria
    Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters says New Zealand continues to have serious concerns for peace and stability in north-east Syria. “Recent reports that hundreds of ISIS-affiliated families have fled from a camp are deeply concerning from a humanitarian and security perspective”, Mr Peters says. “While we acknowledge Turkey’s domestic security ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Government on high alert for stink bugs
    Biosecurity Minister Damien O’Connor is warning travelling Kiwis to be vigilant as the high-season for the crop-eating brown marmorated stink bug (BMSB) is under way. “We’re on high alert to stop BMSB arriving in NZ. The high season runs until April 30 and we’ve strengthened our measures to stop stink ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Better protections for students in halls of residence
    The Government is moving swiftly to change the law to improve the welfare and pastoral care of students living in university halls of residence and other tertiary hostels. Cabinet has agreed to several changes, including creating a new mandatory Code of Practice that sets out the duty of pastoral care ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • New trapping guide for community and expert trappers alike
    The Minister for Conservation Eugenie Sage has launched a new comprehensive trapping guide for community trappers to help them protect our native birds, plants and other wildlife, at Zealandia in Wellington today. ‘A practical guide to trapping’, has been developed by the Department of Conservation (DOC), and was launched during ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Widening Access to Contraceptives Welcomed
    Associate Health Minister Julie Anne Genter welcomes PHARMAC’s move to improve access to long-acting reversible contraception (LARCs). PHARMAC has today announced it will fund the full cost of Mirena and Jaydess for anyone seeking long term contraception, lifting previous restrictions on access to Mirena. “I welcome women having greater choices ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Major upgrade for Taranaki Base Hospital
    The Government has approved the next stage of a major redevelopment of Taranaki Base Hospital, which will deliver new and improved facilities for patients. Health Minister Dr David Clark has announced details of a $300 million dollar project to build a new East Wing at the New Plymouth hospital. It ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Extra support for rural families
    Extra funding will allow Rural Support Trusts to help farming families, says Minister for Rural Communities and Agriculture Damien O’Connor. “I know that rural families are worried about some of the challenges facing them, including the ongoing uncertainty created by the Mycoplasma bovis outbreak. “Those concerns sit alongside ongoing worries ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Howard Leaque Beekeeper programme graduation
    Thank you for the opportunity to be here to present certificates to the 16 graduates who have completed a beekeeping course delivered by the Howard League.  Let us start by acknowledging Auckland Prison’s Deputy Prison Director Tom Sherlock, and Acting Assistant Regional Commissioner of Corrections Northern Region Scott Walker - ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Finance Minister to attend APEC meetings
    Finance Minister Grant Robertson leaves this weekend to attend the APEC Finance Ministers meeting in Santiago, Chile. Discussions between APEC Finance Ministers at the meeting will include the effects of the current global economic uncertainty, risks for APEC economies and sustainable development of the region. While at APEC Grant Robertson ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Pacific languages are a source of strength, they ground us and build confidence
    The Minister for Pacific Peoples Aupito William Sio says for Pacific people, language can be a source of strength. It can help ground us and give us confidence. When we speak them, our languages provide us with an immediate and intimate access to our identity and our story - and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Major boost to support disabled people in sport and recreation
    The Coalition Government has announced an action plan to improve the wellbeing of disabled New Zealanders by addressing inequalities in play, active recreation and sport. The initiative includes training to develop a workforce that understands the needs of children and young people with a range of impairments, advocacy for fit ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • More prefab homes to be built as red tape cut
    The construction sector is being freed up to allow more homes to be built more quickly as the Government cuts through some of the red tape of the Building Act.  “Every New Zealander deserves a warm, dry, safe home and old inefficiencies in the Building Act make building slow and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Further details of Prince of Wales and Duchess of Cornwall visit to New Zealand
    Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has welcomed further details on the Prince of Wales and Duchess of Cornwall’s visit to New Zealand next month. Their Royal Highnesses will visit New Zealand from 17-23 November – their third joint visit to New Zealand and first in four years. They arrive in Auckland ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • O’Connor in Thailand to push for RCEP deal
    Minister of State for Trade and Export Growth and Minister of Agriculture, Damien O’Connor, heads to Thailand today to attend the final Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) Ministerial meeting, as negotiations enter their final stages. “The RCEP Agreement would anchor New Zealand in a regional agreement that covers 16 countries, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Young Pacific people can access earning and learning opportunities in Hawke’s Bay, Otago and South...
    Pacific young people living in the Hawke’s Bay, Southland and Otago regions will have access to support services that have proved successful in helping young people find new earning and learning opportunities. “Tupu Aotearoa is about changing Pacific young peoples’ lives. Our young people are talented, they are smart, they ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Protecting wellbeing – ACC HQSC Trauma Forum
    Introduction As the Minister for ACC I thank you all for the work that you do supporting New Zealanders in their literally most vulnerable moments. From those who hold people’s lives in their hands, to the people who research technique, technology and trends, your work is highly valued. A special ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • NZ economy in good shape – notes prepared for speeches in Christchurch
    Notes prepared for speeches in Christchurch – Wednesday 9 October 2019 Today’s topic, “trends and opportunities for the New Zealand economy,” is certainly one getting a great deal of commentary at the moment. Looking across the media landscape lately you’ll notice we aren’t the only ones having this discussion. There ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • World Mental Health Day a reminder of the importance of mental health work
    Minister of Health Dr David Clark and Associate Minister of Health Peeni Henare say this year’s World Mental Health Day theme is a reminder of why the Government’s work on mental health is so important. “This year the World Federation for Mental Health has made suicide prevention the main theme ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Cultural Ministers Meeting
    Associate Arts, Culture and Heritage Minister Carmel Sepuloni will represent the government at Australia’s Meeting of Cultural Ministers in Adelaide this week. “This year’s meeting is special because New Zealand is expected to become an International Member of the Meeting of Cultural Ministers at this Australian forum,” Carmel Sepuloni said. “The meeting is an opportunity to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago