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In doing so they’re asking us to forget about the other numbers – the decline of wages, the rising costs of living, the children in poverty.
But a budget is about more than numbers – it’s about New Zealanders. We believe that politics should serve people, not the other way around.
That’s the difference facing New Zealanders this election. A choice between a Government focused on paying favours to their privileged donors or a Labour-led Government that puts people first.
My vision is to make New Zealand the fairest, most decent society in the world. One where everyone has the opportunity for a well paid, secure job. Where the opportunity to own a warm, dry home hasn’t slipped out of reach of the next generation. And where every child has the best start in life.
As the election approaches you’ll see more policy from Labour on these key areas of work, family and home.
Today I announced that the next Labour-led Government will get aim to unemployment down to 4% in its first term.
We’ll do this by upgrading our economy to create skilled, well paid jobs. Our monetary policy ugrade challenges the status quo that is failing New Zealand’s exporters and the people they employ.
And our manufacturing and forestry economic upgrades will create thousands of skilled, well paid jobs in our regions – the places that need them most.
We’re doing this because to build strong communities you need a strong economy.
You also need decent, affordable homes.
Labour will build 100,000 new affordable homes over ten years, introduce a capital gains tax excluding the family home to stabilise the housing market and restrict offshore speculators from driving up house prices.
We’ll also introduce a Healthy Homes Guarantee to ensure all Kiwis have a warm, dry home – because that’s what every Kiwi kid deserves.
Our kids also deserve the best start in life, which is why I announced our Best Start package earlier this year including 26 weeks’ paid parental leave, a $60 a week child allowance and an extention of free ECE to 25 hours a week.
Work. Family. Home. Those are our priorities.
We will be a progressive government. Kiwis have always believed in working hard, and in looking after each other, and we have always believed in equality and in freedom.
We’re a nation I am immensely proud to be have grown up in, to be a part of.
And we are a nation I will be immensely proud to lead.
The next Labour-led Government will end the politics of division, the politics of the privileged few versus the rest, and will work alongside all New Zealanders, in the interests of all New Zealanders.
Because I believe that we need to put people first if we are to build the prosperous and vital nation we all want to live in. I’m really keen to talk to you about how we get there, together.