benefits

Categories under benefits

Raging at Metiria is not about the fraud – it’s that she sided with the lepers

Written By: - Date published: 7:01 am, July 27th, 2017 - 257 comments

Graham Cameron cuts through the obsession over fraud to the cultural values of the last 30 years and the fear beneath.

Beneficiary reduction targets, homelessness and suicide

Written By: - Date published: 7:01 am, July 26th, 2017 - 39 comments

Most people would be shocked to learn that each WINZ case manager is assigned the target of getting a certain number of people off the benefit every month. This is one of the reasons why we have such a punitive and aggressive welfare system. Fewer than half of those removed from the benefit go to jobs. The Nats neither know nor care what happens to the rest, but links to the rising number of homeless and our shocking suicide statistics should be investigated.

Greens: Grandparents and children deserve better than National’s ‘penal welfare’

Written By: - Date published: 7:13 am, July 25th, 2017 - 34 comments

National’s ‘penal welfare’ approach is failing kids, failing caregivers and failing New Zealand.

#IamMetiria

Written By: - Date published: 7:00 am, July 20th, 2017 - 34 comments

If you know that feeling of dread when you get a WINZ letter, or if you’ve had roiling anxiety from being  ‘called in’ for a WINZ interview, or sighed with relief when the letter from WINZ turns out to be a replacement community services card, then follow #IamMetiria. And if you just don’t recognise those, then you might want to follow #IamMetiria to find out why others do…

I am Metiria

Written By: - Date published: 9:12 am, July 19th, 2017 - 75 comments

If you’ve ever left a WINZ office crying because you asked for help and were humiliated instead

Benefit fraud vs white collar crime

Written By: - Date published: 7:02 am, July 18th, 2017 - 39 comments

The political hills are echoing with the aftermath of Meteri Turei’s confession of lying to WINZ, and Paula Bennett’s conciliatory and very precisely worded claim of not having done so “deliberately”. A good time to revisit the topic of benefit fraud vs white collar crime / tax evasion.

Metiria Turei and Paula Bennett on benefit fraud

Written By: - Date published: 10:46 am, July 17th, 2017 - 241 comments

Turei’s admission that she lied to WINZ back in the day was a political gamble. It could resonate with a big chunk of non-voters – here’s a politician that’s just like us – has been through what we’re going through. On the other hand it gives the usual mean-spirited righties a club to beat her with. Interesting that Paula Bennett is treading so lightly round the issue.

Lefties on fire

Written By: - Date published: 6:30 am, July 17th, 2017 - 95 comments

The best of twitter from the weekend.

This is not an image of a Low Flying Penguin.

Written By: - Date published: 1:40 pm, July 16th, 2017 - 62 comments

It’s also is not a picture of a person claiming entitlements who has not felt compelled to bend the truth when dealing with WINZ. Both images would be equally difficult to find.

The Greens’ new welfare policy

Written By: - Date published: 12:24 pm, July 16th, 2017 - 310 comments

“Green co-leader Metiria Turei described it as one of the most important Green policies in her 15 years in Parliament.”

Breeding for a business

Written By: - Date published: 12:08 pm, July 14th, 2017 - 23 comments

It looks like ACT the party of less government will be focussing on pregnant beneficiaries this election.

Labour coming in from the cold

Written By: - Date published: 12:18 pm, July 13th, 2017 - 63 comments

Amongst all the hooha of the political week, Labour did something pretty cool with its winter heating announcement. They made a policy for all beneficiaries. We should be paying attention to what underpins that because there is potential here.

An appropriate apology and an issue that needs fixing

Written By: - Date published: 7:04 am, June 2nd, 2017 - 103 comments

The Ministry of Social Development illegally penalised a woman who refused to name the rapist father of her child. The case shines a spotlight on an issue that needs fixing.

Still spinning “social investment”

Written By: - Date published: 10:04 am, May 7th, 2017 - 36 comments

Directing welfare spending where it will do most good makes sense. But let’s make sure that that is what it is, not an excuse to simply cut funding, stigmatise, and target “undesireables”. National’s record does not inspire confidence, to say the very least. Then there’s the hypocrisy…

Social investment meets the surveillance state

Written By: - Date published: 11:14 pm, March 4th, 2017 - 45 comments

First they came for the budgeting services. Now we know that every social service agency  has to provide clients’ private personal data to the Ministry of Social Development or get no funding. Apparently it’s  essential to Bill English’s much-touted and little understood “social investment” strategy, which is sounding more like something out of Orwell’s 1984. […]

Spinning ‘social investment’

Written By: - Date published: 8:32 am, January 14th, 2017 - 53 comments

Bill English has co-opted the old term “social investment” to replace another old term “targeted welfare”. Simon Wilson (writing at The Spinoff) has bought into the spin and written a deeply confused piece about it.

The Centrelink fiasco

Written By: - Date published: 11:07 am, January 6th, 2017 - 29 comments

In Australia the Turnbull Government is implementing a policy that will demand in 12 months at least 200,000 Australians repay benefits they were entitled to because of faulty data mapping.

Briefing Papers: And so this is Christmas…

Written By: - Date published: 6:10 am, December 23rd, 2016 - 107 comments

Alicia Sudden reflects on Christmas at The Briefing Papers: “Yet this brief annual window excludes the elephant in the room: that this poverty is a consequence of our welfare system failing to provide the support it was intended to.”

The Future of Work Commission report

Written By: - Date published: 8:59 am, November 6th, 2016 - 17 comments

The Future of Work Commission report has now been released. It contains 63 recommendations including the tentative implementation of a universal basic income and a that voluntary work for approved organisations allow beneficiaries to continue to receive a benefit.

Through the Looking Glass.

Written By: - Date published: 12:57 pm, October 31st, 2016 - 15 comments

The culture being addressed will be familiar enough to many here in NZ who deal with Work and Income. Government strategies to address that culture? Well, that’s another story. This isn’t just happening half a world away. It might as well be happening in another universe – back on the sane side of some looking glass NZ has fallen through.

I see a poverty of ideas and a poverty of Government responsibility

Written By: - Date published: 7:35 am, October 13th, 2016 - 210 comments

Judith Collins yesterday said that child poverty is the fault of parents and not the fault of her Government.

A MPI boondoggle subsidy for Wairarapa land speculators?

Written By: - Date published: 9:17 am, September 21st, 2016 - 23 comments

You have to wonder about the quality of some of the economic process control that goes on for National’s politically important subsidies to the farming industry. A economic review of a Wairarapa Water application for second stage feasibility funding from the Irrigation Acceleration Fund for the “Black Creek” and “Tividale” irrigation schemes makes it look like government funded boondoggle.

Fortress NZ

Written By: - Date published: 11:25 am, September 16th, 2016 - 120 comments

TS regular Tony Veitch has some practical ideas as to how we insulate NZ from the ravages of neoliberalism and climate change. Readers may agree with some, none or all of the suggestions. However, whichever way you look at it, the time for hand wringing is over. It’s time for action.

Stop the Sanctions!

Written By: - Date published: 7:05 am, September 16th, 2016 - 131 comments

Auckland Action Against Poverty is trying to get a sanction on sole mothers removed.

New Zealand’s most shameful secret: ‘We have normalised child poverty’

Written By: - Date published: 4:01 pm, August 16th, 2016 - 175 comments

Fuck the whole “Brighter Future” New Zealand.

Meth Fries Housing NZ’s Brains

Written By: - Date published: 8:55 am, August 3rd, 2016 - 129 comments

Housing NZ has admitted that it is evicting tenants when only tiny trace amounts of meth are found on the property. It further admits that the testing regime is not fit for purpose. But, hey, they have the power to make people homeless and they’re not going to let fairness or common sense get in the way of their moral panic.

When did the War on Drugs become the War on the Poor?

NZ being used as international example of a bad welfare system

Written By: - Date published: 7:02 am, August 2nd, 2016 - 104 comments

NZ under National is being used internationally as an example of a bad welfare system.

Do we care? Are we going to fix it?

A target we can celebrate missing

Written By: - Date published: 8:38 am, July 16th, 2016 - 72 comments

Anne Tolley has conceeded that the Nats will not meet their objective of getting 65,000 people off the benefit in the next two years. Good. It is the wrong goal.

Be Like Dad, Keep Mum (in fear).

Written By: - Date published: 9:42 am, July 10th, 2016 - 62 comments

Temuera Morrison has made a powerful video for the Women’s Refuge annual appeal. He’s making a difference. You can do something the Key Government won’t do. You can make a difference. You can stop keeping mum about domestic violence and you can help fund your local refuge.

What the Swiss voted on (UBI proposal)

Written By: - Date published: 11:47 am, June 7th, 2016 - 13 comments

Some context for the debate.

UBI gathers momentum in Europe

Written By: - Date published: 10:28 am, June 3rd, 2016 - 51 comments

Practical trials of an Unconditional Basic Income (UBI) are taking place or are under consideration across Europe. Given the increasing automation of work it’s difficult to see a practical alternative to a UBI in the medium to long term.

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