A study highlighted by Grandparents Raising Grandchildren is even more proof that National’s ‘penal welfare’ approach is failing kids, failing caregivers and failing New Zealand, the Green Party said today.
The study of 1000 grandparents raising 1700 grandchildren was published in Kōtuitui: New Zealand Journal of Social Sciences Online.
“When 85 percent of grandparents are incorrectly told that they are not entitled to benefits, it shows the social safety net has failed,” said Green Party Co-leader Metiria Turei.
“We see this coming through in how Work and Income New Zealand (WINZ) treats their clients with only 11 percent of those surveyed having ‘something neutral or positive to say about their experiences.’
“This is the grim result of a welfare system which reportedly incentivises staff to throw people off benefits and deny entitlements to people.
“New Zealanders know that the way WINZ is treating people is wrong, so why doesn’t National?
“Grandparents who have stepped up to raise their grandchildren are heroes and need our support.
“National needs to stop punishing people on welfare by making it so hard to access entitlements and treating those who need help so poorly.
“The Green Party in government will mend the safety net. We will reform WINZ, remove benefit sanctions, increase entitlements, broaden who qualifies for support, and ensure we have a welfare system that works for all New Zealanders,” said Ms. Turei.