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Key fiddles while our youth burns

Written By: - Date published: 1:27 pm, August 14th, 2011 - 329 comments
Categories: benefits, jobs - Tags:

Like the UK, we have a crisis in youth poverty. We don’t have riots, yet, because we lack the population density. There’s no jobs. Increasingly, no hope. Key’s solution? Tinkering. A bureaucratic, easily beatable system where young people on benefits get food stamps and basic costs paid directly. Where are the jobs, Key? Or have you given up?

Here’s the guts of what Key is proposing. 3,300 16-17 year olds are on benefits. Out of a total 330,000 beneficiaries,. Key’s big policy is not to pay 0.5% of beneficiaries just in cash. Instead:

* Essential costs like rent and power being paid directly on behalf of the young person;

* Money for basic living costs like food loaded on to a new payment card that could not be used for things like alcohol or cigarettes;

* A limited amount of money for young people to spend at their discretion.

First off. What’s the point in a card stopping 16 and 17 year olds buying booze and ciggies anyway? It’s illegal for them to buy them already. If the legal ban on buying these products isn’t stopping someone, how will some poxy card?

This stuff all seems attractive but there’s a reason that it hasn’t been done before. It just gets rorted.

Say I’m 17. Got out of an abusive home. Got the Independent Youth benefit. Living in a flat with others.

Say I want to get round the new limits and spend my benefit money on fags and booze. Not true of all people on the IYB, of course. But if you weren’t spending the money on booze and fags before, those policy doesn’t change anything for you. If I am one targeted by this policy, how do I get round it?

Easy. I tell WINZ I’m paying $150 rent when it’s really $100. Even show them my sub-tenancy agreement saying so. Other flatties give me $50 kickback in cash. I buy most of the flat’s food on my payment card. Flatties pay me back in beer.

How are you going to stop that? Audit my spending? Come by my flat and check out I’m not rorting? Get real.

Key’s also going to change the law so to government knwos when a 16-17 leaves school. So they can track the 10,000-odd ‘NEETs’ (not in employment, education, or training). And create another 4,500 training places.

Key’s going to spend $20 million on this. That’s $10,000 per 16-17 beneficiary by my count. I would rather he spent $20 million on creating youth jobs. But he doesn’t have the imagination.

The ‘benefit problem’ is a jobs problem. We know that because when new jobs were being created under Labour, 100,000 people got off benefits. Now the jobs are disappearing and more people are on benefits.

While there aren’t enough jobs, we will have to support those unlucky enough not to have one. No fiddling will change that. All it will do is let the problem smoulder.

329 comments on “Key fiddles while our youth burns”

  1. Sure this is just one part of the problem, but an important part. Investing at the start of a problem is far better than trying to deal ongoing aftermath (for generations).

    • Zetetic 1.1

      You’re falling for the ‘we must do something, this is something, therefore we must do this’ fallacy.

      Not every option calling itself a solution is a solution. This will do nothing at all to get people off benefits. It will just be a waste of WINZ resources trying to police and easily rortable system.

      I’m all for policies to get people off benefits. Especially young people. Unfortunately, this isn’t one. It’s a sick joke.

      • Pete George 1.1.1

        I think what Key has suggested in his speech is one of the best proposals I’ve seen to target a specific problem that in the past has kept growing into longer deepseated and eventually generational problems.

        This targeted approach is the best way to deal with problems that haven’t been successfully addressed in the past. It won’t be perfect and it won’t work for everyone but it’s far better than just giving everyone more money and leaving them to continue with their crappy way off life.

        • Eddie

          Can you explain how Key’s policy will get people off benefits into jobs that don’t exist?

          I love Farrar’s reaponse: “The cost of the package is estimated to be $25 million a year. I think that is an investment worth making if it produces results.” It’s a tautology. Anything is worthwhile if it produces worthwhile results.

          . The important point is “if it produces results”. Why do you think that food stamps, easily rotable as Zet says, will produce results?

        • Deadly_NZ

          Oh really All this bullshit is for only 3300 out of 330,000. And you can bet your bottom dollar that there will be some ‘entrepreneurial individual probably pop up and start to ‘buy’ the 100 food for something like 80 bucks. I also heard that thy were going to make the Winz payment cards bright orange. Something like a ‘warning’ beneficiary here, discrimination at a glance.

          • millsy

            kinda like a yellow star really….

            • SHG

              Millsy said “kinda like a yellow star really”

              Well it’s obviously the first step towards extermination squads and death camps.

              • Colonial Viper

                A few weeks ago a lot of hopeful young Norwegians were politically killed. Sometimes the world does not work how we might think.

          • Colonial Viper

            You have to wear an orange arm patch into the shop if intend to pay for goods and services using the card.

            • Anthony

              I Love God.
              I thanks Jesus.

              Dear God sorry for being a complete **. Sorry I have not fixed this country.

              I am weak lazy and repugnant, the pain that is caused here I don’t know how I can stop it.

              Let there be light for us to see a way out.

              In your Holly name and by the power of the blood of Jesus our Lord and living christ.


          • freedom

            if you have ever had to purchase the basics of life with a special needs grant in a busy supermarket ( especially one that does not normally deal with ‘those sorts of people’) then you have probably experienced how truely vile some people in NZ can be. A bright orange card will be like a red rag to a bull for these types.

        • Vicky32

          I think what Key has suggested in his speech is one of the best proposals I’ve seen to target a specific problem that in the past has kept growing into longer deepseated and eventually generational problems.

          You are able to think that, only because you are ignoring the details! How is this treating these 16-17 year olds as if they are 6-7 year olds, going to make any difference at all to “generational problems?”

          • Colonial Viper

            You’re talking to Pete George right? The guy who was given a job by the Government at the Post Office when he was that age?

            Hypocrites, the lot of ’em.

          • Pete George

            Much of what is being proposed is an expansion of current pilot schemes that have had some success dealing with some of the most troubled and difficult to deal with young people.

            It’s something that requires time – more than a year or two – and a lot of hard work to see some significant levels of success, and an acceptance that some young people are just about impossible to succeed with. Some are pretty much unemployable.

            • freedom

              two things : firstly which schemes are you referring to?

              second: great to hear that all those who work in finance are going to be subject to the same conditions as Trevor Ludlow? Or perhaps we wait and see the sentences for Kenneth Moses, Mervyn Doolan and Donald Young before we decide how best to proceed? Either way i believe it will be a fair way to control the everyday actions of financiers by treating them the same way we treat all those found guilty of Financial Fraud and criminal behaviour.

              No, you say? That’s nothing like the same subject? But you just said it was a good idea to criminalise the intention of all 16-17 yr old beneficiaries. It is exactly the same and you know it is. It is unjustifiable segregation. It is economic apartheid. It is an assumption of diminished responsiblity. I cannot wait for the rich kids leaving school, signing on and the neighbor seeing the supermarket scandal as the card holder buys their groceries. OOh the serenidpity is too delicious. Though on the other side of that coin is the damage to self esteem on all the kids from all walks of life who are guilty of nothing but working hard, qualifying, and not finding employment in the worst job market for forty years!

              These ridiculous cards can be seen only for the thin end of the socially destructive wedge that they are. A wedge designed to further vilify the poor and absolve the wealthy for a few more years as the programme is given time to await results.

              It is already like London never happened
              or is it more like Uncle Ernie said
              Stick in your earplugs, put on your blindfold, you know where to put the cork

              • johnm

                Hi freedom
                “These ridiculous cards can be seen only for the thin end of the socially destructive wedge that they are. A wedge designed to further vilify the poor and absolve the wealthy for a few more years as the programme is given time to await results.”

                I agree 100% As I have said all along Key wishes to slavishly copycat the rubbish American system(After all he made his ill gotten gains working for Merryl Lynch one of those Yank money manipulators that went broke-why did it go broke?) which cruelly penalises persons who are poor allowing them to merely survive on food stamps while the filthy rich get richer and richer and buy the Government so that its Government by the rich for the rich. If he gets away with this it’s just the start mark my words we’ll end up a bananarama state dictated to by the wealthy-the poor will suffer more and more.One thing the rich don’t do: they don’t share willingly.

            • Colonial Viper

              Making excuses for Key

              PG = Apologetic Apparatchik

            • mik e

              PG this is going to be effective as the boot camps!

          • mik e

            See Fran O’sullvans article about NZ having the worst child poverty statistics in the developed world it would cost only $360 million a year to fix this problem A $6billion per year damage to our economy. Alcohol a $5to$6billion a year damage problem .National fix problems in the economy YEAH RIGHT!.We have enough money to fix the problem permanently but as usual National will make mileage out of their bludgers bandiad!

    • mik e 1.2

      So it makes you wonder why National cut all the disadvantaged youth programs that were helping youth stay connected and into jobs and later replaced it with temporary schemes.

      • Deadly_NZ 1.2.1

        Because a a money broker, and a twat with a commerce degree. And neither have a clue of what it is like in the real world. So how the fuck can you expect them to come up with anything, that is actually good for the youth of this country ?. They are clueless as is the rest of the caucus, And yes they will fiddle, whilst our economy tanks.

      • aerobubble 1.2.2

        Nothing to wonder about. Its the MSM that does not tell us how many are
        dropping off the dole to move to Australia. Key merely gives yet more
        incentive to youth to move to OZ. And why? Well because farmers
        can’t be extorted at the currency border if there is a wider deeper
        economy to buy their US dollars and sell kiwi dollars. The NZ
        is a racket, basically in lean years farmers get low currency, but
        in good years farmers hit high currency.

        So expect more policy made to disincentivize the economy and
        keep the status quo, policies that target the symptons not the causes.
        Since obviously Key was seleceted by speculators for speculators and
        stack Nat/ACT with pro-speculators.

        It also probably plays to retirement boomers who fear being robbed,
        foolish small minded bigots who believe that cutting money to poor
        youth will likely reduce crime rates…

    • mik e 1.3

      Your so right PG the problem starts with 1 in 4 of our children living in poverty its a $6 billion drag on our economy cost to fix $360million it would be a no brainer to a bean brained bean counter but to a right wing bean brain bean counter its more important to make sure the rich have a $360 million tax cut!

  2. Eddie 2

    If Key proposed making beneficiaries dress up as fairies, the likes of Pete George would say “Sure this is just one part of the problem, but an important part. Investing at the start of a problem is far better than trying to deal ongoing aftermath (for generations).”

    There’s no ‘but will it work?’ test in their mind

  3. Colonial Viper 3

    Key is suggesting a whole new game of expensive government bureaucracy as part of National’s smoke and mirrors election play.

    Shit these guys really are out of ideas.

    Food stamps?????? Who are they being advised by ffs.

    • Akldnut 3.1

      But CV this is war (against the underclass). Everyone knows when you’re at war the poor/underclass are forced onto foodstamps and rationed.

    • weka 3.2

      Yes, and people who think this is a good idea need to be reminded of how badly WINZ manage things at the moment. It is a *highly* dysfunctional system. I’m not talking about things like discretion and decisions about entitlement (which also vary wildly depending on where you live and who you get on the day).
      I’m talking about at the very basic levels of administration, the system is broken. There appears to be no synching of files between offices and the call centre (which is where beneficiaries are being directly for first line info about their benefits), so there can be a discrepancy between what an office will say and what the call centre will. It’s not unusual for form letters to be sent out that are wrong or misleading. The whole letter notification structure itself is useless beyond telling a beneficiary that there is some change and what the new amount is (letters don’t say what has changed, never mind why).
      Because there are no case managers now so it’s increasingly hard to see a WINZ staffer who actually knows what you’re being paid and why. Often those things are in paper files which are eventually archived and aren’t available via the computer network, so if you’re a medium to long term beneficiary it’s hard to access that information. As a result often there is no-one – not the beneficiary nor anyone at WINZ who has an overview of a benefit.
      And people wonder why there are so many overpayments.
      There’s lots more examples. Nothing earth shattering, but it all adds up to a system that already can’t cope. Introducing yet extra layers of administration like monitoring rent payments or food cards is completely insane.
      There’s two explanations:
      1. National and its advisors are completely ignorant of the reality of how WINZ functions at the office level.
      2. They’re completely aware of how it functions and are going to monkey wrench it so in a few years they have an even worse system that is justificiation for privatisation.

    • Stamper 3.3

      CV @ 1:43pm
      “Who are these guys being informed by FFS ?”
      WINNERS – people who realize we have to improve how we provide social support.
      Get real or wither in your ignorance for another 3? 6? 9? years as irrelevant.

      And have another nice day in oblivion.

  4. chris73 4

    This is a good start, I hope theres more to come but this is a good pointer of things to come

    • Deadly_NZ 4.1

      yeah whats good about it?

    • KJT 4.2

      Like withdrawing training allowances, making student allowance harder to get, closing down youth employment schemes, withdrawing funding from successful initiatives (like the Salvation armies), cutting down on trade training funding, continuing with “free trade” agreements, continuing with reducing wages.

      Yes. A good pointer of things to come.

      AND what did the same policies do for the UK recently.

      • Ari 4.2.1

        Actually, the sallies do need funding withdrawn, if only so that it’ll go to similar organisations that aren’t homophobic.

        • Vicky32

          Actually, the sallies do need funding withdrawn, if only so that it’ll go to similar organisations that aren’t homophobic.

          Your comment amounts to ignorant bigotry. If your sexual opportunities mean more to you than peoples’ lives, go ahead and be a f***wit, but if you care about women, children. straight people generally and people with substance abuse problems, then let the Sallies get on with doing what you’re too ‘otherwise occupied’ to do.
          I’ll give you homophobic! (I would, but I’d be banned and I don’t deserve that.)

          • terryg

            translation: yes the sallies are homophobic bigots, but to hell with fags

            Ah, religion, what a lovely thing you are. not. Nice to see you’re a fucking homophobic bigot too Vicky.

            • Vicky32

              Ah, religion, what a lovely thing you are. not. Nice to see you’re a fucking homophobic bigot too Vicky.

              I am what you’d call a homophobe yes, because I don’t like gay men – they’re very selfish, as you and Ari are busy proving. Deal with it.
              Instread, I care more about the good the Sallies do for people in need, and that you would like to see them unable to do, all because you think they’re “homophobes”.

  5. Phaedrus 5

    Nothing original from Key, just hackneyed ideological nonsense imported from overseas. How about focussing on creating jobs, so school leavers see the promise of a good life in front of them. Labelling all young school leavers as drug addled no-goods is sloppy and just, as usual, pandering to the white middle and upper socio-economic groups. Standard right wing tactics. If they really cared then they would invest in our young people, who are the future.

    Hang on, when has this government ever done anything that invests in the future? Cullen fund? Nope. Kiwisaver? Nope. Public transport for an oil restricted future? Nope. Carbon emissions? Nope. Environmental issues e.g waterways? Nope. Growing an economy that is less dependent on primary produce? Nope.

    Maybe I’m asking the impossible then, to think that they might invest in our young people for their sake and the future of our country.

  6. Blighty 6

    Why is it a good policy? How many people will it get off benefits and into non-existent jobs? Are you at all concerned that Key made no estimate of this?

  7. Blue 7

    I’m just staggered by the idiocy. As Zetetic points out, 16 and 17 year olds can’t legally buy booze or cigarettes anyway. If they are getting their hands on these things now, they’re obviously getting other people to buy them on their behalf. As in, this ridiculous joke of a policy is not going to change anything for them.

    All that will happen is an expensive program of making special cards for youth beneficiaries that will not allow them to buy things that they are already legally not allowed to buy.

    I’m having a cycleway moment here – as in, I can’t believe that this ridiculous guff is actually policy and that it is being taken seriously.

    And that’s not even factoring in the blatant hypocrisy of National, who went to the last election crying ‘Nanny State! Nanny State! Lightbulbs, oh woe is me!’

    I despair.

    • freedom 7.1

      the booze and ciggies angle is distraction and nothing more, always look at what the other hand is doing
      and this time it is sorting little cloth stars into handy disposable age groups

    • David 7.2

      16-17 year olds also cannot vote.
      Who was it that is quoted as saying ” communism by stelth” ? Oh thats right….smile and wave John Key

  8. Ed 8

    Welcome to the National Party nanny-state. We will pay public servants to tell you how to live your life – sorry there are no jobs . . .

    • prism 8.1

      Ed A building firm supervisor in the days of regular apprenticeships used to go to the homes of the lads that hadn’t turned up for work and get them out of bed. These kids are never going to improve their lives and opportunities unless they have a committed mentor to get them going and stay on task. Then a large percentage will be able to move on as independent agents, but not all. It will be an improvement from leaving them to go to hell in a hand-basket.

      • Stamper 8.1.1

        Hear hear Prism @8:20;
        do the same old things – get the same old failed results; go National – you know what you’re voting for!

        • mik e

          Prism I thought it would be far more effective if National just had more boot camps you’d have thought so with their effectiveness .Or maybe we could have them all build cycleways.

          • jackal

            What would be effective is if National tried to fix the economy instead of just giving themselves and their rich mates tax cuts in the incorrect belief that a trickle down effect will create jobs.

            Create some jobs John Key by investing in communities, young people are already motivated to get off the dole, but there are not enough apprenticeships or jobs for them.

            When I was younger, my boss used to help me out by picking me up for work, but at the end of the day he paid me. Keep the young on track by giving them work and paying them properly for it.

            Money is a great motivator, telling youth what to do without any reward will just cause rebellion. Threatening them with a stick will cause resentment, and we’ve all recently seen where that resentment leads.

            By turning on the young, and in fact cannibalizing them for an election campaign, National is acknowledging that they’re not going to fix the economy or create jobs. It’s basically a cop out and acknowledgement that they’re a complete failure.

            A nanny state… more like a graveyard state. That’s the real result of National’s policies.

  9. Blighty 9

    The righties here and everywhere don’t seem to understand the difference between assertion and argument, the difference between blind faith and reasoned thought.

    Zet explains why the policy is dumb. The righties assert ‘the policy is good’. When asked why they think that, they just use different words to say ‘the policy is good’ again.

  10. mik e 10

    In reality the right like a little bit of unemployment it keeps inflation down pressure on those in work not to agitate and helps keep wages down. They have never been good at running economies, except into the ground. The wealthy can all ways look after themselves so long as the right can keep roughly half of the people happy they don’t care about the rest . Unemployment has always been worse under national and roger douglas. They don’t have a plan so the only option is to bully the unemployed

  11. queenstfarmer 11

    If the legal ban on buying these products isn’t stopping someone, how will some poxy card?

    Quite effectively, because unlike cash, you can’t give the card to your 18 year old mate to buy the booze (I assume retailers would not be allowed to sell alcohol on the card to anyone).

    • Colonial Viper 11.1

      You buy groceries for your 18 year old mate and in exchange he can buy the booze.

      Shit you don’t even need a flash accountant to rort this system.

      • Blue 11.1.1

        Just wait until National delivers the card that will stop 16 and 17 year olds buying pot with their benefit money.

      • queenstfarmer 11.1.2

        Of course, like they do with food-bank food already. You could also wash your mate’s laundry in exchange for booze too. But the most effective thing is not to simply dole out money from the Govt. It creates a barrier. At least someone will be getting non-alcohol related groceries.

        • Vicky32

          . But the most effective thing is not to simply dole out money from the Govt. It creates a barrier.

          Sorry. I know what the individual words mean, but these sentences don’t compute… Barrier, what?

          • queenstfarmer

            A barrier, an obstacle, a disincentive. You’d have to buy some other groceries and then sell them for cash, and then go buy booze. Which is harder than walking into a shop and buying booze with welfare money. And many of these people will not be the highly motivated sort.

            • KJT

              If I was out of work with no hope for the future you had better hope I can buy booze.

              Because otherwise I might take out my despair on the selfish right wing shits who caused the problem.

              • queenstfarmer

                Oh I see. So you wouldn’t “take out your despair” over not having a job, instead you’d “take out your despair” for not getting booze. Explains a lot.

                • KJT

                  QS. Failed. English comprehension.

                • Vicky32

                  instead you’d “take out your despair” for not getting booze. Explains a lot.

                  As does your deliberate misunderstanding of what s/he said. I tell you, because of a family history of alcoholism, I have avoided alcohol my whole life, but 2 1/2 years of unemployment is making me consider getting bladdered!

                • bbfloyd

                  queeny,, you made a sensible comment yesterday….. but now you’ve gone and spoilt my bohemie with this absurd and insulting generalisation regarding young people.. you aren’t descended from any McCawbers are you?

            • Ianupnorth

              The only effective barrier (that is one which research proves to work) is price
              You could make tobacco far more expensive – but hang on, don’t the Nats get money from the likes of BAT? Plus it would be a vote loser
              You could make booze dearer – but hang on, don’t the Nats get money from the alcohol industry? Plus it would be a vote loser
              You could tax fast food that is causing obesity – but that would remove choice and it would be a vote loser.
              Far easier to scapegoat, appeal to the red necks and avoid unpopularity.

            • Puddleglum

              I can’t see it being a barrier. As others have said, you just buy food for someone you know, they give you cash (maybe even less than the value of the food so they make on it) and you go and buy alcohol, cigarettes, etc..

              This so-called policy is entirely constructed to garner votes rather than make any difference to youth welfare. The downsides in disaffection and further alienation and marginalisation will by far outweigh reducing the alcohol consumption of some very small proportion of the ‘target group’ by some miniscule amount.

              I’m generally measured in my judgments but this ‘policy’ is truly pathetic.

              I have a strange sense of foreboding, however, that the calculation truly underpinning it will prove correct – the electorate will lap it up.

        • mik e

          It wold be far easier to keep children at school or in training till they are 18 like most European countries that have low youth unemployment,they have pathways to work training or tertiary training. not a blame the youth BS.More of this confrontation style ie like boot camps won’t work.Until we deal with the ONE in FOUR children living in poverty we are going to have this $6billion millstone dragging our economy to the bottom of the OECD 28TH now! welcome back from the Nat conference Qstf.

          • queenstfarmer

            welcome back from the Nat conference Qstf.

            Ouch – low blow! I have never been a member of any party, attended any party function or donated to any party, ever, meaning that unlike many people here, I am proudly independent.

            • Colonial Viper


              the Farmers Union donates to the NATs

              • queenstfarmer

                Nor the Farmers Union (or Federated Farmers or whatever other ones they are)!! It’s just a non de plume

                Hmm, on reflection I have donated to one political entity – Greenpeace – but that was years ago when they were still a charity and hadn’t gone off the rails.

  12. Your missing the point. Key doesnt care about jobs. Capitalism demands a level of unemployment to drive down wages. He’s driving most of it offshore but youth are copping most of it right now. Key wants to define and target youth, subject them to more state discipline, so they can be policed and harassed and ultimately criminalised when they riot, loot, rebel. As we see in the UK, this drives the property owning middle classes wild with fear and rage and willing to vote for fascism. Don’t think it can’t happen here. They are that desperate.

  13. millsy 13

    I’m picking that there will be a lot of multinational corporations lining up for the contract to design this card – which I assume will be like an eftpos card? or would it be only be able to be used at certain approved retailers? Im actually picking that this will be rolled out to all of those on benefits in time.

    I’m also picking that there would also be a lot of private providers (such as John Tamihere’s lot, or those Whanau Ora types) who would be lining up to clip the ticket and tell young people how to run their lives (because apparently all they do is smoke, drink, and have babies).

    I find that 99.9% of all those under 18 who wind up on a benefit are these that have fallen through the cracks, ie having trouble at home, fell behind at school, gotten into trouble with the law, and all sorts of things. It would be far better to focus of keeping all young people in school (or at tech in the first place), and if that means schools and techs having to spend less of their money on glossy advertising for international students, and more on ensuring that young people have a safe and secure learning environment then so be it.

    Of course to be fair, I was expecting a full scale declaration of war on the poor. But it seems that this is going to be done bit by bit.

  14. Adrian 14

    Has Ipredict got a call on the day of the first riot? And is that the day that the Nats are banking on?

  15. DS 15

    The important thing is that they’ll be able to choose what sort of lightbulbs they can buy.

    • Colonial Viper 15.1

      Because that’s the freedom youth want, as opposed to the freedom to have well paid employment and be valued in society, not looked down upon like criminals in training.

    • mik e 15.2

      Instead of cycle ways they could change light bulbs.When Muldoon had run up huge deb’ts and failed to solve the unemployment problem saying their was light at the end of the tunnel,The graffiti told the truth would the last person leaving for Australia turn out the light.Another 3 years of these bandaid policies are gojng to have the same result.

  16. Tombstone 16

    This is about State Control – pure and simple.

    • queenstfarmer 16.1

      Gosh, it’s not as if the state “controls” anything else. Next thing they will be passing “laws”.

      • Crashcart 16.1.1

        But surely if it was a labor government proposing this it would be just a case of Nanny state taking away peoples choices. Can you not smell the stench of your own hypocrisy. If you take away my ability to choose you are evil. Those poor people though, don’t let them breed and tell them what they have to spend their money on. After all you have to earn the right to make your own choices don’t you.

        • queenstfarmer

          Then you obviously aren’t up with the play. It is traditionally parties on the right who actually want food-stamps and other such controls to ensure (or enforce) more responsible use of welfare funds, and parties of the left that just want to hand over cash with no controls.

          • felix

            Read it again q, you didn’t catch it first time.

            In fact you’ve reinforced the point Crashcart made; that the right aren’t really concerned about state intervention as long as it’s only directed at the poor.

            But you’ll scream blue murder if anyone dares to tell you what kind of lightbulb you can use.

            • queenstfarmer

              There’s quite a major difference between a person buying a lightbulb with their own money, and the state redistributing taxpayer money. When it’s taxpayer money, the public has a much greater right to control how it is applied.

              • Colonial Viper

                When it’s taxpayer money, the public has a much greater right to control how it is applied.

                You mean the Government of course, not the public. Down to monitoring how each person spends each dollar, right?

                Perhaps you could make beneficiaries jump through demeaning hoops as well, on a weekly basis.

                Since you pay them you own them, right?

                The bailout monies that the Government provided to wealthy SCF bond holders. Shall we also track exactly how they spent those Government provided monies?

                One rule applied evenly to the rich and the poor, right?

                • queenstfarmer

                  You mean the Government of course, not the public

                  Well both. It’s taxpayer money, taxpayers have a right to control it. And they will get a say – the Govt could just pass a law right now that implements this scheme, but they are going to the electorate on it.

                  Down to monitoring how each person spends each dollar, right?

                  No – why the hyperbole?

                  • Colonial Viper

                    And the SCF bondholders? And mediaworks $43M loan? Tracking them too are we? 🙂

                    No – why the hyperbole?

                    Don’t you want to find out if they are buying healthy food with their benefits? I mean, if they get fat or sick, they’ll end up costing the health system more. And we don’t want that.

                    • queenstfarmer

                      And the SCF bondholders? And mediaworks $43M loan?

                      If they were given for a purpose, yes – I don’t know if you have ever run a business or society but that is standard practice. It is very standard for loans or grants (commercial and non-commercial) to be tied to a purpose and/or be restricted from being used for other purposes.

                      I doubt this would apply to SCF indemnities. The Mediaworks “loan” (which isn’t actually a loan) is clearly purposed.

                    • The Voice of Reason

                      “The Mediaworks “loan” (which isn’t actually a loan) is clearly purposed.”
                      Clearly purposed to return another National led Government?
                      And, yes, it is a loan. Deferred payment still leaves a debt which will be paid off over time. If Mediaworks are not paying commercial interests rates on it, that doesn’t mean it’s not a loan, just that it’s corrupt.

          • mik e

            Qstf The parties on the left create jobs.The right want some unemployment to so coldly improve productivity.This policy is just another cheap band aid to cover up the real long term problem of child poverty which is leading to this problem.

            • queenstfarmer

              Even if it’s only a band aid, it’s at least worth trying. Unless you think there’s some great downside to stopping teenage beneficiaries directly blowing their welfare money on booze.

              • felix

                Err, the chance that this will stop any kid who wants alcohol or drugs from accessing them is zero.


                But it will make it a little bit harder and a little more expensive, and it will make these jobless, hopeless kids resent society and the system just a little bit more than they already do.

                So that’s something I suppose.

                • queenstfarmer

                  I agree the chance of stopping them accessing booze (and drugs) is zero. But what I said was stops them spending it directly.So it makes it harder, as you admit.

                  And like several others on this thread, you too assert that denying teenaged beneficiaries the ability to directly blow taxpayer-provided benefits on booze (which they shouldn’t be able to buy anyway) is cause to be “resentful”.

                  • felix

                    If making it a bit harder doesn’t actually stop the behaviour (and neither of us seem to think it will), then what’s the point?

                    ps I think it will make them resentful, whether you think they’re entitled to resentment or not.

              • mik e

                Qstf if your not a Nat supporter you could have fooled me and just about everyone else.In fact you are just regurgitating Nationals spin word for word no ideas of your own just helping push a failed policy.This is just another feel good boot camp policy thats designed to divide and conquer.At $25million it would be cheaper and more productive to keep these youth in school or training with a path to employment like those much more intelligent Germans do.Do some Research of your own Qstf then I’ll start believing some of what you say .Don’t be such a bore and just follow orders from Key

              • KJT


                Just another waste of our money from NACT to avoid facing up to the real problem.

                The real problem being that their fucking the economy to make themselves wealthy.

          • mik e

            The left create jobs something the right have never been able to do . Other than for the old boys network. LOOk at the NZ statistics year book going back as far as you like other than Roger Douglas Labour has created jobs not dole cues like National and before it the reform party.

          • David

            Again…” Communism by stelth” JK

      • freedom 16.1.2

        passing laws ! they have been doing plenty of that,
        day and night regardless of how much democratic conduct they have to abuse or ignore in the process

  17. This is not about opportunity, it’s about authority.

    • jackal 17.1

      Personally I think it’s about bigotry. National is counting on a lot of voters agreeing to blame the young. Rhetoric is a powerful tool even when it’s based on stupid policy.

      As others have pointed out, many of those affected cannot vote, they have little political knowledge and therefore cannot easily ensure their rights are upheld.

      National’s election campaign based on youth and beneficiary bashing is going to be a barometer on just how bigoted New Zealand has become as a nation. Basically John Key has said; “We can’t fix the economy and get 20% richer at the same time, so lets use the tried and true method of divide an conquer. Who gives a damn if we sacrifice the young?”

      I’m hopeful that the majority of eligible voters care enough about New Zealand’s future, and vote against the current despicable administration.

  18. reid 18

    This is not about authoriti or control, it’s about fixing a problem that’s been around forever.

    How many people on these benefits do you think spend their day sitting round getting wasted if it’s payday and playing computer games and how many days in your average Mon-Fri “working” week do you think that happens?

    What happens to the biochemistry in the brain in young people 16 and over if they smoke a lot of weed and/or P and/or whatever?

    Is this a good thing, or a bad thing?

    Fine, we all agree, don’t we, it’s not a good thing.

    So is this going to stop it or not?

    No, of course not, not completely but it’s a step in that direction, isn’t it. It’s a mechanism whereby you can gradually plug the gaps of those people who find ways round it, as Viper so helpfully suggested above.

    One thing the package didn’t mention, and that’s compulsory regular drug tests for everyone on the dole, sickness and youth benefits. That would go a very long way toward improving the dole stats.

    I recall a Southpark episode on weed: Stan’s moralising speech had the line:

    “Weed makes it ok to do nothing”

    and that’s exactly what it does.

    Take that away and it won’t change overnight, but it will change.

    • millsy 18.1

      Of course, to solve that problem we could have drug and alcohol treatment and rehab programs, instead of treating every person on a benefit like a stoner, which is what you seem to be advocating.

      • reid 18.1.1

        No you’ve fundamentally misinterpreted the intent behind everything I said millsy.

        Of course we have rehab programs galore. Of course we do. The objective let’s remember is to change actual behaviour. To stop the drugs. In their tracks. Period.

        Of course we use every single tool we have including the very best psychological techniques, the best proven management programs, to help our young people and beneficiaries to change their lives for the better. Of course we do all that. Whyever would you imagine that such would not be the case?

        • weka

          Then why aren’t we? We don’t adequate rehab programs, we certainly don’t have anything approaching adequate youth psych services (drug abuse is considered a disease in this country, not a moral failure). And we’re doing some things to prevent the problems but those are being largely undermined by the decrease in social wellbeing.

    • weka 18.2

      Reid, what proportion of 16 and 17 year olds on benefits use P? Until you can answer that, with good research to back it up, then you’re tallking out of your prejudices. And even if there was a sizeable proportion of those youths using drugs in a problematic way, the appropriate response would be to (a) provide support for those for whom drug taking is a problem (not all drug taking by teens is a problem) and (b) make the necessary changes to society to increase jobs and training for young people.
      Restricting access to money is going to make it more likely that people with drug problems commit crimes and/or take cash work. It also teaches people that age that they have less worth in society. Bad move.
      What would be the point of drug testing the dole, SB and youth benefits? And why those benefits in particular (it’s ok to smoke weed on the DPB, Widows, Invalids or Superannuation?).

      • reid 18.2.1

        No weka, one only needs to understand life to know that in a given population of young people of 16 and over left to their own devices with poor education a certain proportion will probably turn to drugs of some kind or another, that’s just how life works.

        If you think it’s prejudiced to discuss how life, in fact works, then pray tell cause I’m personally not sure why it is.

        Drug testing those beneficiary groups would catch a huge number of adults. The same equation applies to them but twofold. Adults on the dole etc are even more likely to do it.

        • weka

          As a 16 year old of good education and left to my own devices I took drugs and had a good time. I know of ‘poor education’ 16 year olds who didn’t. So there’s one of your prejudices for a start. In order for your arguement tohave any credibility you’d have to know how many of the really small number of 16/17 yr old beneficiaries actually take drugs in ways that are a problem.

          Of course young people are going to take drugs, and young people having a hard time even more so. So?
          There is a difference between a 16 year old smoking cannabis recreationally and a 16 year old addicted to P. So there’s another of your prejudices. 
          I gave you the benefit of the doubt and responded as if you could tell the difference between drug use and abuse (a mistake on my part), but you’ve since admitted that we don’t have adequate rehab or support services to treat youth addicts. So how is restricting their access to their benefit going to help exactly? Do you really think that that will limit their access to drugs?
          I was still at school when I was 16 and I had no problems at all accessing drugs despite having no regular income. I have no idea what you mean about understanding life, because you don’t seem to understand even these basics.
          You still haven’t said what the purpose of drug testing all beneficiaries would be. Apart from identifying who uses drugs (a major breach of civil liberties) what’s the purpose? Are you suggesting that people who test positive lose their benefit, or what?

          • reid

            So how is restricting their access to their benefit going to help exactly? Do you really think that that will limit their access to drugs?

            National aren’t restricting their access to their benefit, at all. They’re restricting their ability to use it to buy any old thing they want and when you’re talking about poorly educated immature people often from abused backgrounds, isn’t that a good thing?

            Why is it a restriction on their “freedom” to stop young people from doing this for they only do it out of ignorance. It’s not because they’re bad, it’s cause they’re ignorant and emotional, which is the definition of immature.

            So why isn’t it a good idea, from the state’s perspective, to make sure they can’t do that.

            That is not repeat not saying anything whatsoever about how many do it or don’t do it, for that question is quite irrelevant and I don’t understand why some raise it as if it is.

            • Stamper

              Reid 8:54 pm –   “Why is it a restriction on their “freedom” to stop young people from doing this for they only do it out of ignorance. It’s not because they’re bad, it’s cause they’re ignorant and emotional, which is the definition of immature.”

              Dead right; continue the current failed policies; get the same social disaster. National is saying – this is our policy – if you don’t like it, don’t vote for us.  You have to give them credit for being honest;  a refreshing change for a better society.

              • Colonial Viper

                National pretending to care about youth.

                When all they really want for Christmas is to pay them less.

                And in doing so suppress wage rates at the bottom end of the market even further.

                • Stamper

                  Poor old CV
                  Ain’t it a bummer when the Nats come up with a winner – like actually addressing welfare entitlements – i.e getting the $’s to the needy – not just everyone who applies.
                  Looks like many years in Opposition. 

                  • Colonial Viper

                    A winner? There are 58,000 under 20’s unemployed and Food Stamps imported from the USA to work with a couple of thousand of them is a “winner”?

                    You really think so? NAT are so bereft of ideas 🙂

                    PS 46M Americans now living on food stamps. What other ideas can we copy from the USA?

                    • Child beauty pageants. They are a real favourite with the raincoat brigade; child exploiting parents; etc.

                      Ya gotta love our American cuzzies – anything to turn a buck. (I’m surprised that prostitution/soliciting hasn’t been de-criminalised/legalised.)

              • David

                Again…. 16-17 year olds can’t vote

            • Reality Bytes

              “They’re restricting their ability to use it to buy any old thing they want…”

              No they’re not doing that at all.

              It’s already been explained, the orange card holder buys food for his/her mates who exchanges food for cash. Cash can then be used to buy Booze, P, ciggies, pot, all black jersey, whatever.

              All they’re doing is wasting 20mil on a fail-scheme.

              • reid

                What happens if they introduce it for the adult beneficiaries as well, RB?

                Where are the 18-year-olds Viper is promoting, then? If they only have a budget of say, $20 a week for beer, on the card? You think they’re going to spend it on their younger friend? Get real.

                • weka

                  Get real indeed. So your argument is that the scheme doesn’t fail so long as they introduce another scheme. Brilliant.

                • bbfloyd

                  reid… you do know that you are actually moving very, very close to advocating fascisim, don’t you?

                  first ze children,,,, zen, ze youth, zen ze yunk adults, zen ve crrush ze unions.. step one; construct “labour” camps(as per operation”bootcamp”) along the main cycle paths…..step two; arm the police with a new type of tazer nicknamed”cattle prod”.

                • Reality Bytes

                  Why do you assume all their mates/family are also on the benefit? If they can afford booze on the dole now, why can they not afford it after doing a couple of ‘transactions’.

                  Face it, this system is ridiculously easy to get around. It’s costing $10k per head, personally I think that $10k would have been far better invested in things like, oh I don’t know, apprenticeships, education, things that ACTUALLY HELP these people become more employable.

                  But hey it’s smart policy for the securing loyalist bene hating voters. Nat loyalists who would never dare to question Nat policy or heaven forbid look at any of it critically/logically.

            • weka

              “Why is it a restriction on their “freedom” to stop young people from doing this for they only do it out of ignorance. It’s not because they’re bad, it’s cause they’re ignorant and emotional, which is the definition of immature.”
              On that level, I think a case can be made for putting in structures that teach young people certain life skills. But that needs to be targetted to those that need it. Restricting access to benefits (yes that is exactly what they are doing – they are restricting where and how the benefit is used, that’s the whole point of the policy) across the board treats all those people as if they are the same. It’s patronising and wasteful. And, as other’s have pointed out it won’t even work. It will encourage a kind of underclass entrepreneurship and creative strategising amongs those youth.

          • mik e

            Theres more drug taking at our universities where our wealthy youth and future leaders are partying and rioting .

        • Vicky32

          Drug testing those beneficiary groups would catch a huge number of adults. The same equation applies to them but twofold. Adults on the dole etc are even more likely to do it

          What utter prejudiced shite!

    • These proposals do nothing about addressing cannabis use.  All they may do is cause an increase in crime as young people use alternative methods to raise funds.

      And don’t you think it is a bit hypocritical for some gin swilling tory to tell young people that they shall only use their money in a certain way? 

      • reid 18.3.1

        I know they don’t micky, that’s why my first post on this said, they should.

      • Stamper 18.3.2

        Micky @4:41
        “And don’t you think it is a bit hypocritical for some gin swilling tory to tell young people that they shall only use their money in a certain way? ”

        Again missed the point Micky – it is not their money – it is the TAX PAYERS money;  we would like to know it is being used responsibly.

        • mik e

          Just like bailing out joyces old joint for $43million just like chaney in americaYEAh RIGHT

          • Colonial Viper

            Or the more than $1B given to wealthy SCF bond holders. What happened to all that money? What did the rich people do with that Government money? Why are we not holding them accountable for what they used it for?

    • Vicky32 18.4

      One thing the package didn’t mention, and that’s compulsory regular drug tests for everyone on the dole, sickness and youth benefits. That would go a very long way toward improving the dole stats.

      No it wouldn’t! The words authoritarian and git spring to mind…
      I don’t use drugs and never have, but I am on the dole, and it’s a matter of principle. What’s your next vicious suggestion going to be, no vote for those on benefits? I just don’t believe you have had the cheek to make such a vile suggestion.

      • reid 18.4.1

        Why wouldn’t it improve the dole stats Vicki?

        Do you deny that IF one was young and IF one was using drugs it would be beneficial for that not to happen?

        • Vicky32

          You tell me why it would improve the dole stats! If one was young, and using drugs, yes, it’s desirable for that not to happen, but how does making young beneficiaries pee in a cup alter the dole stats, unless you’re then going to say “Go and die, druggy, no dole for you!”.. But lots of lovely dosh for drug-testing companies (subsidiaries of American ones, no doubt – the same ones that drug tested a solo mother for her job renting out videos to people at 3 am… ) How is that logical? Though I suppose it must be to you..

          • reid

            Because it’s hard to think straight when your mind is clouded.

            Because people in poverty have to be shown the way so they can lift themselves out and this is a first baby step.

            It’s demeaning to the human spirit to be told: you’re useless, you can’t do it yourself, we’ll have to drag you out.

            That is in fact what one side of the political spectrum tells youth and for that matter dole and DPB beneficiaries as well.

            They tell these capable, powerful, resource-filled human beings that nah, don’t worry about changing your behaviour and lifting yourself out, we’ll do it all for you.

            To me Vicki, that’s an abrogation of the human spirit.

            • Colonial Viper

              Right Wingers claiming that they understand the human spirit. What a day.

            • weka

              “It’s demeaning to the human spirit to be told: you’re useless, you can’t do it yourself, we’ll have to drag you out.”
              What, like telling them ‘you’re too stupid/immature/irresponsible to manage your own money and drug habits so we’re going to do it for you’?

            • mik e

              Reid Cameron Slater [Slippery to his mates ]is in need of your services John Key and Paula Bennett have already been saved by the welfare state.

        • mickysavage


          This is the absurdity of the proposal.  There are no jobs out there.  Tens of thousands of jobs have disappeared and have not been replaced.  You could make every unemployed shave every day and sing the national anthem before every meal and things will not improve. 

          • neoleftie

            true very true and until we have meaningful dialogue and a reactionary party we will juts have the staus quo on an economic system.

    • Blighty 18.5

      What does this policy have to do with weed?

      And do you seriously think that two hundy a week is a lifestyle option?

      When national came to power, 200 15-24 year olds had been on the dole for longer thab a year. That figure has risen eight-fold. Young people haven’t suddenly changed. The jobs have disappeared.

    • Stamper 18.6

      Well said – National are making changes to improve the long term lot of Social Welfare beneficiaries.

      • Campbell Larsen 18.6.1

        Stamper – the national party conference is over now – You should save bullshit like that for the party faithful.

      • mik e 18.6.2

        Stomper.They wouldn’t be on a benefit if labour was in power they would be in training which Natioal axed or at school or more likely a JOB you right wing Narcissist.’DPB figures under national have sky rocketed from 89,000 to 213,000 thats effective policy.Boot camps really worked as well.

    • reid 19.1

      The whole idea Macro is not to make the dole the career choice it currently is, for many. Isn’t that the whole idea. And if that was my particular career choice and I started my “career” at 16 after leaving school at say, 14, I think when I was around 18-19 things would be looking rather bleak.

      One imagines it will be of course something discrete like a credit card size thing, no tattoos I imagine, unless I missed something.

      • Vicky32 19.1.1

        The whole idea Macro is not to make the dole the career choice it currently is, for many. Isn’t that the whole idea.

        A career choice? My what a fantasist you are… Where did you get that particular little nightmare from, the woman who dreamed it up by interviewing her keyboard about kids at a school and got a bully pulpit on Stuff a few weeks back? Evil little man…

        • reid

          No I actually heard it from real people. Apparently lots of families out there actually make the dole a career choice. There was an article in the Herald on this the other week, you must have missed it Vicky.

          Since the left is interested in these people indeed see these people as their base, I’m always curious to understand why it is you never address problems like these, which are real actual genuine not made up problems, aren’t they, when you’re in power. You never do.


          • Colonial Viper

            Apparently lots of families out there actually make the dole a career choice.

            Or they leave for Australia, a country which values workers and pays them what they are worth.

            Labours core base are hard workers who want to see themselves and NZ get ahead.

            Time for your lot to be voted out.

          • KJT

            If that is the problem give them better choices.

            Like jobs that pay enough to live on. Instead of McJobs, where by the time you have paid to get there you have nothing left.

          • Vicky32

            No I actually heard it from real people. Apparently lots of families out there actually make the dole a career choice. There was an article in the Herald on this the other week, you must have missed it Vicky.

            That’s the article I referred to above, idiot.. the woman who interviewed her keyboard. So what ‘real people’ are you talking about? Have you ever met a beneficiary, much less one 17 years old?

            Since the left is interested in these people indeed see these people as their base, I’m always curious to understand why it is you never address problems like these, which are real actual genuine not made up problems, aren’t they, when you’re in power. You never do.

            I am one of “these people” inasmuch as I am a beneficiary. No, the ‘benefits as career choice” meme is a made up problem, you’ve yet to convince me otherwise. I brought up a son on the DPB and guess what, he’s a professional (a real one, not a businessman), and none of my children is a beneficiary, but according to your wanky little fantasies, they should all be drug-using gang members. They were lucky to get their jobs and in the case of the older ones, their education before Key and Bennett wrecked it all.

            • KJT

              We have two teenagers staying in our basement. Both have been looking for work for two years now. Despite being willing to take on almost anything, they are still unemployed.

              One, who out of pride has managed to stay off the UB until now with odd jobs, has just been told he needs photo ID to get an interview with WINZ. Unfortunately he has no money to get one. Catch 22.

              Yet another had to give up a job with Mcdonalds as the pay and the hours they were getting meant they were paying more to travel to the job than they earned.

              Another we know who is a student cannot get an allowance because they are only studying 0.85 FTE, but are not allowed the dole because they are studying.

              I suspect these sort of rules is how National got 7400 of unemployment benefit rolls recently.

          • Stamper

            Good point Reid
            The left are not interested in helping the poor – they just want their vote; then they will pursue their ideological “imperatives” which usually don’t include the “poor” – why do I say that – well 9 years of LIBIAR made no difference.

            • framu

              jesus wept stamper – if your going to trot out lines from 5 years ago at least spell them correctly

          • mik e

            ITS a very small percentage just like the corporate bludgers the tax dodgers the alcohol subsidy the tobacco subsidy most unemployed and DPb recipients are only on a benefit for a short time but under National govts the numbers on long term benefits always goes up I see a solution sack this govt solve the problem!

      • Macro 19.1.2

        You obviously have no understanding of 16-17 year olds today. And as a consequence, I don’t think you should be pontificating on the matter.
        With 27% of our young people unemployed, and not one single effort made by this shower of a government to create any work in this country – but every effort made to farm it off overseas, they should be hanging their heads in shame, not devising more ways to further marginalise youth.
        Oh! Let’s pay them even less than the minimum rate – that’s a good idea!

        • Colonial Viper

          I think I might take some actions to politicise the young people in this country, teach them a thing or two about political economics. Apparentlyt just over a quarter of them currently have quite a bit of time on their hands.

          • jackal

            National’s proposal puts youth into training for endeavours that fall out of the taxable realm. The main training that will be in effect when WINZ uses more draconian policy to further marginalize the poor, will lead to increased criminal behaviour. I presume Nact need to ensure the next generation of criminals will be filling all those privatized jails they’re so keen on.

  19. Afewknowthetruth 20

    The death of the financial-military-industrial complex is going to be a very messy affair, unfortunately, because those in power refuse to accept that the house of cards is collapsing, even as they think of new ways to prop it up.

    Those young people who manage to get through the coming bottleneck will be finding/growing their own food, making/repairing their own clothing and making/repairing their own dwellings. It clearly would be very sensible to provide them with practical skills needed to do such things. However, it is clearly an anathema to the likes of Key to allow any preparation for what is on the horizon, which suggests ‘dave brown’ may be right in his conjecture.

    There is little doubt NZ will lurch further towards a fully-fledged fascist state as the haves attempt to prevent the have-nots from sharing the rapidly diminidhing ‘cake’. I certainly don’t see any sign of revolution yet.

    Perhaps a bit further down the track we will see something akin to what happened after Marie Antoinette supposedly said, when told the peasants had no bread and were starving: “Let them eat cake.”

    Sadly, it is all so predictable.

    • reid 20.1

      There is little doubt NZ will lurch further towards a fully-fledged fascist state as the haves attempt to prevent the have-nots from sharing the rapidly diminidhing ‘cake’

      Crikey. Really? I hadn’t noticed.

      Why do you think that?

      • Colonial Viper 20.1.1

        We’ll make you take notice before long mate 🙂

      • Tombstone 20.1.2

        Take off your fucking blinkers and take a good look at what’s going on in this country. There are no jobs but our govt is carrying on as though they’re in abundance and those on benefits are just plain lounging about and refusing to work. History clearly demonstrates that where there is work the overwhelming majority will work and they will work by choice. When there are no jobs choice is more a luxury than it is a reality and the reality at the moment for thousands of Kiwis is that jobs are hard to come by and their situations are worsening even further by the ever increasing cost of living. These are tough times and yes tough times call for tough measures but that being the case those measures have to make sense and the pain has to be shared by all. It makes no sense to get all heavy handed with beneficiaries in times of high unemployment because it will simply do no more than breed resentment and rightfully so. No one likes to be bullied, especially when you haven’t done anything wrong and have simply been dealt a bad hand through no fault of your own – often why many many people end up having to sign on for welfare. Circumstance, not choice. It does make sense however to look at measures to help create employment and stimulate the job market and once again bullying the jobless is not the answer. It’s just bullying for the sake of bullying – I would even go as far as to say an abuse of power. John Key and his razor gang are clueless. The problem lies with the lack of jobs, not with those forced onto welfare because of it. Create jobs, stop farming all our work out to the likes of China and start growing the job market. Grow the job market and the unemployment figures will naturally decline without the need to bully any one let alone resort to odd ball measures like food stamps. It’s not rocket science. It’s about how you tackle the problem and National are going about the whole thing arse about face. Simple. They need to be gone by November if this country has a hope in hell of getting out of this down ward spiral.

  20. Treetop 21

    3300 16 – 17 year olds on a benefit, what a BIG load of croc this is.

    Link never works so go to A – Z Benefits – Work and Income.

    DPB: Who can get it
    Are the parent of a child under 18 who is dependent on you.

    What is going to happen to a 16 – 17 year old when the parent has the DPB taken off them?

    Invalids: Who can get it.
    16 years or over.

    Sickness or Unemployment: Who can get it.
    18 years old or over (or 16 – 17) if you are married or in a civil union or in a defacto relationship and have one or more children in you support.

    What is going to happen to the 16 – 17 year old when the parent has the unemployment or sickness benefit taken off them?

    There is also citizenship and residential criteria to meet to be eligible for benefits, (refugees do not have to meet the same criteria).

    Unemployment of 16 – 17 year olds is not 3300. Key’s scheme is already doomed because of not getting a basic fact correct which is the actual cost of supporting a 16 – 17 who is no longer being supported by a parent/adult.

    An increase in marriage, defacto, civil unions will occur for 16 – 17 year olds just to qualify for some benefits.

    • Treetop 21.1

      DPB comment above is a bit misleading as you must be 18 to apply or meet the below criteria.
      DPB: Who can get it
      Are 18 or over (16 – 17 if you were legally married or in a civil union).

      • mik e 21.1.1

        23to24,000 more DPB recipients under National thats effective policy the biggest jump ever in numbers another Natioal failure .Now they have created a bigger problem their blaming it on those with the least power.

    • weka 21.2

      “3300 16 – 17 year olds on a benefit, what a BIG load of croc this is.”
      Apparently it includes 18 yr olds on the DPB.
      This is all I could find in stats https://www.msd.govt.nz/about-msd-and-our-work/publications-resources/statistics/statistical-report/statistical-report-2008/multiple-sections/swift-solo-data.html#tablea35
           Clients aged 16–17 years receiving an Independent Youth Benefit1
      Total aged 16-17 years

      2004 Number    2005 Number    2006 Number    2007 Number    2008 Number
         2,169            1,914               1,611                1,203               1,190


      • Treetop 21.2.1

        Weka in a nut shell the 1964 Social Security Act needs to be rewritten/relegislated as it is f****d.

        When it comes to stats the actual figure is hard to pin down because some 16 – 17 year olds are at home with one or more parents and the parent is either on a benefit or not, but the 16 – 17 year old is still being supported.

        One minute I hear 3300 16 – 17 year olds are on a benefit. On Stuff today I read 13,500 people age 16 – 17 are not in education, work or training. Of those 1600 are not on a benefit.

        My observation is that the government cannot even address the 1600 figure of 16 – 17 year olds not in education, work or training.

  21. freedom 22

    66 comments in 3 1/2 hours on a Sunday afternoon
    I suspect this topic will show more interest from the community than CT may have projected

  22. prism 23

    The question is – where the jobs are going to be for these young people? Some could be created in managing the system. There is a heavy administrative cost of treating beneficiaries like baby birds with wide open beaks that have dollars from the tax system regurgitated on request, or the bad experience of being pushed out of the nest like naked little fledgings. Any intelligent and responsible government would have a list of various options for times of recession involving public works that would advance the country, also encouraging councils to run schemes for the betterment of the locality.

    They are going to ban tobacco and booze for the youngsters. They could help a drive to limit drinking especially of RTDs by putting up the duties every year, bringing down that on low alcohol to encourage those who want to be cool and drink, to go for something cheaper, Also put up the age limit without allowing any kerfuffle about people being able to go to war, have babies etc at lower ages. In Uganda and other places they have abducted young children to be soldiers, forced them to kill and maim to get blooded, and used the girls as bush wives. So the age argument relating to fighting, sex, driving etc. is stupid, because if we decide to limit substances that are meant to be mind and mood altering we as a society would be behaving responsibly.

    • reid 23.1

      prism this policy doesn’t address that.

      This policy is about (a) monitoring and (b) altering behaviour in a positive way. I can’t understand why people are saying this is a bad thing. I mean for a tiny example, you guys think GST-free fruit and vege is simply terrif. So why is this restriction on alcohol and smokes a bad thing? Just as a tiny example.

      • prism 23.1.1

        @reid What are you talking about? Did you actually read my comments. Sorry there are so many words and an attempt to make a thought-through, exampled opinion.

        My second para is all about what the govt could do if they weren’t addicted themselves to the alcohol industry and getting useful funds and perks for the party promotion, and extra taxation from the excess sales which they have encouraged when freeing up hours and sale points over last decades. Labour in Britain have had 24 hour alcohol available I think. Great for creating social stress and to prevent prosperity for the addicted.

        • reid

          The question is – where the jobs are going to be for these young people?

          No idea prism. This policy we’re discussing is but one piece of a big puzzle. I don’t hold a lot of hope, conditions are tricky and I certainly don’t believe the budget projections of 175,000. That’s bollocks. But so what? That doesn’t mean this policy is bollocks, it’s a separate question.

          I think your 2nd para strays into other areas as well, specifically the general drinking policy applied to all youngsters. But we’re not talking about all young people we’re talking about beneficiaries only.

          Why should the state let immature people and at 16-18 you are immature, buy that with its dime? Why is that a good idea? Lefties in particular the Greens think it’s a really terrific idea to ban stuff they don’t think is good for you. There are hundreds of those in their policies. So why are people complaining when National suggests banning people from buying an unarguably bad substance, on the state dime? National isn’t saying they have less rights than others in that, they can buy whatever just like anyone else that age, just the state won’t pay for it. What’s wrong with that and if the Greens want to ban heaps of other stuff, why wouldn’t they like this policy?

          • Colonial Viper

            I think we should focus on making sure NZ youth know that they cannot be trusted, that we will not go out of our way to find them gainful employment in society, and even as workers they are worth less when doing exactly the same job as someone else.

            • reid

              You teach youth a sense of confidence and self-worth CV through this process.

              Automatically you have taught them budgeting, a vital skill few in the target audience have.

              Other things happen as well. For example as their minds clear from the fog of drugs they begin seeing possibilities other than playing PlayStation games all day.

              Why do you hate this so CV?

              Isn’t this a good thing?

              • jackal

                You teach youth about budgeting by removing their ability to spend their money without being told what to buy? You seem to be another complete moron reid.

          • Vicky32

            on the state dime?

            You keep using this phrase, Reid. So, I get it now – you’re an American! So what on earth are you doing here? Go back to your evil empire and stuff it up a bit more…

      • freedom 23.1.2

        reid, hats off to you and your cohorts
        i love how you have taken an authoritarian bid to control a person’s most basic life choices
        and twisted it into a helping hands restriction to stop kids smoking
        clap clap clap clap clap

        if the right need this much distortion on their reality filters to allow them to sleep at night
        it is no wonder Thatcher is swigging scotch in hell’s conservatory

        • reid

          reid, hats off to you and your cohorts

          I call them my legion, freedom.

          I especially like the wing-ed ones. They’re really good.

      • KJT 23.1.3

        Nanny State! ?????

        • reid

          I don’t know. Is it?

          • Colonial Viper

            Simple answer:

            It is when Labour does it.
            It’s OK when National does it.

            • reid

              Exactly CV, well done.

              It’s just the conservatives know what they’re doing whereas the left don’t hence they screw it up, all the time. Look what happened last time.

              • Colonial Viper

                National isn’t a party run by conservatives.It’s a party run by neo-liberals.

                National = Once were farmers.

                • neoleftie

                  well the whole political matrix has progressively shifted towards the right. I know labour cabinet ministers over the years who were dyed in the wool neo libs

              • mik e

                lower long term unemployment is not screwing it up @28% economic growth over 8years is better than 1% over 5 years of billenglishs bungling!

            • Dan

              Yes, because Labour tries to control how people spend the money they earn by virtue of their own hard work.

              National try to control how people spend the money which other people have worked hard to provide them with in the form of benefits. National won’t tell you what you can and cannot do with your own money.

              • Ianupnorth

                Gees you are a sucker! One of the governments responsibilities as a government is to look after the needs of EVERYONE and EVERYTHING – because, to put it bluntly, people are human, and the majority (like you) cannot differentiate between good and bad, at a personal or a societal level.
                National don’t have to tell you what to do with your own money; big business and its multi billion dollar advertising budget tells you what to consume on their behalf – you not figured that out yet?
                Read and learn http://iansescapevalve.blogspot.com/2010/10/nanny-state.html

                • Colonial Viper

                  Dan probably thinks that he isn’t influenced by marketing campaigns, PR spin or biased news reporting. “Free choice” and “libertarian freedoms” etc.

      • mik e 23.1.4

        REID GST-fruit and veges Obesiety another problem national is refusing to to do anything about maybe they don’t want to embarrass GERRY. this is another multibillion stuff up reid !

    • mik e 23.2

      Prism maybe we could have user pays for alcohol the most dangerous drug after tobacco ,the cost of damage to society that alcohol causes is $5.5billion.Then the cost of not dealing with child poverty another $6billion I’m sure if the populist gutless Nats really wanted to do some real change they would but the booze lobby are deeply entrenched in Nationals back pocket.So instead we get cycle ways boot camps and now food stamps {swipe cards] oh yeah more failed policy!

  23. Mac1 24

    Like the weather outside, this is a snow job- by John Key. And the idea shows as much substance as 170,000 jobs in cycleways, increased tourism through turning up on American entertainment TV shows or wearing a merino suit to a royal wedding. Tomorrow, this idea will be cold, slushy and less memorable than snow in winter.

    • reid 24.1

      No it won’t, it’ll be hot hot hot. All the MSM will be raving about it for the wonderful breath of fresh thinking.

      Isn’t it wonderful?

      • Colonial Viper 24.1.1

        😀 Yeah I’m looking forwards to it actually.

      • Afewknowthetruth 24.1.2

        At the end of the afternoon the ‘Titanic’ is sitting another millimetre lower in the water. But wouldn’t expect the MSM to notice that, would we?

        • KJT

          I think the decks are just about to go under actually.

          Three more years of NACT and the band will be blowing bubbles.

          • reid

            Apparently, a really massive chunk of the country don’t think that, according to poll after poll after poll after poll.

            Isn’t that peculiar.

            • KJT

              They will wake up.

              People are still reacting to their disgust at Labour continuing with right wing neo-liberal policies.

              The media makes sure that most people do not know what is going on.

              People will realise in time.

              I would not want to be a National MP when they do.

            • Mac1

              Read the trends in the polls, Reid. Aren’t they wonderful?

  24. weka 25

    According to TV1 news, the scheme will be administered by community groups (not WINZ) who will get paid bonuses for good results. Not sure what that last bit means.

    • reid 25.1

      Let’s hope the base rate is really really low and the bonuses are really really massive. That’ll get everyone sprinting around all over the place but you wouldn’t want to be the poor bastards that don’t get them would ya.

    • mik e 25.2

      Is that going to be the over stretched ngo voluntary sector YEAH RIGHT wing nut jobs

  25. fabregas4 26

    I love how a card can be developed that ensures that alcohol and cigarettes can’t be purchased but for months now Key and his cronies have been saying that it is too hard to work out what is fresh food in relation to GST. Hypocrites.

    • weka 26.1

      How come they can’t have a smart card for MP expenses?

      • reid 26.1.1

        Exactly. Published on the web, every week. For every one of them.

      • mik e 26.1.2

        What about treasury perks they are taking free lunch bribes from the big banks this should be looked into we are supposed have an independent public service not a treasury in the pocket of the main banks no wonder they give such bad advice . With a leadership that takes perks what would you expect. So they are setting moral boundries for the poor. But have none for themselves

    • reid 26.2

      Not at all fabregas. The GST issue is a technical argument based on efficient administration given its a consumption tax. The proposal has a great many negative implications but if you don’t understand how it works and why removing it from fruit and vege is a massive elephant-size dumb move in the wrong direction, then I fear we venture into off-thread territory so I can’t get into the details, not cause I don’t know them but cause I don’t want to get banned.

      • fabregas4 26.2.1

        Not at all – the argument always trotted out is that it is too hard to do- very rarely is there discussion around what it does in terms of overall taxation.

        • reid

          No fabregas it’s not the tax take that’s the argument it’s the difficulty of administering exemptions and the wedge-danger of where do you stop.

          Australia made a huge mistake when it designed its system, and so did the UK. We got it right: kept it simple and all experts agree, except a few union ones who happen to have a vested interest in saying otherwise so I really listen to them.

          And when I say “administering” I’m not – duh – talking about the IRD. I’m talking about every single business in the country which includes mostly – duh – small operations who can’t afford the fancy systems that places like Foodstuffs can. That’s the problem with it.

          It’s quite simple but I won’t reply again on this topic. It’s off thread.

          • Colonial Viper

            Wow Australia manages to do it and have a faster growing economy than us, but NZ can’t do it?

            Don’t believe you.

            • reid

              Well I don’t care CV because what I say is the same thing all the tax experts except for those in the unions say, and that’s good enough for me. I can explain the detail if you like, if you can assure me I won’t get pinged for being off-topic.

          • fabregas4

            Reid, I am usually polite here – but you are a fuckwit. That is exactly my point. If one can develop a card easily enough to restrict the purchase of certain goods then how hard would it be to do something about GST on certain goods. Not very, I think. And yet this is always trotted out – as you have done as a reason not to do so.

            It is you that is quite simple – quite simply a wanknut.

          • mik e

            Reid Australia has less obesity less child poverty computers have been invented its that simple!our population is much smaller but these big countries can do it its that simple. But not for bean brained bean counters apparantly!

      • mik e 26.2.2

        Just carry on baffling every body with your leaders BS reid Even the IRD said its a simple job only some one as simple or shallow as you wouldn’t understand.

  26. TEA 27

    Deadly_NZ said
    14 August 2011 at 2:41 pm
    (….) I also heard that thy were going to make the Winz payment cards bright orange. Something like a ‘warning’ beneficiary here, discrimination at a glance.

    I see the cards colour is GREEN/BLUE
    “duck egg blue” maybe.
    Exactly what Hon Paula Bennett will be doing this election, well hopefully ……

  27. Here’s a thought Mr. Key, if you invested in proper ECE funding rather than slashing it you might just stop these problems at an early age…

  28. frizajxoj 29

    More black and white thinking from Key. workers, ie those with full time permanent jobs = good. Dole bludging beneficiaries = bad.

    Which leaves those like me who are on the UB but work part time increasingly stuck between a rock and a hard place. I’m wondering how this will work out if it’s introduced for all beneficiaries. Do I pay for my food myself or do I get an orange card from the State? What if I need $160 to visit the dentist, as I did recently (on a net income of $275 a week)? Will nanny budget for it or do I have to save it out of my wages? And what if, as often happens, my hours vary? Do I have to pay back the excess preloaded onto my food stamps?

    This will be an administrative nightmare.

  29. freedom 30

    Some personal favourites from John Key’s speech that i have to get off my chest, goodnight folks

    “We believe in personal responsibility, individual freedom and choice.”
    as Peter Griffen would say…….ah….ah….ah…..what ?
    “Government debt will peak at less than 30 per cent of GDP, thanks to the measures we have taken over three successive Budgets.”
    wasn’t it around 17% when they took over ?
    “The government spends $20 million a day on benefits and hardship assistance.”
    This being the same government that admitted it has been borrowing tens of millions a week more than it needed to because it was a good deal
    “Research tells us that young people who go onto an adult benefit that early will stay on it longer and the lifetime cost of that benefit receipt will be very high.”
    So why are the government hell bent on limiting training and education opportunities with restrictive tertiary institutional funding and boot camp philosophies
    “For the first time, a considerable part of the government’s funding of transitions services will depend on something actually changing. That could include goals like the young person successfully completing a training programme, or not being on a benefit at age 18. Put simply, we are going to make it worth someone’s while to get these young people back on track.”
    Vacant statements like this smell of perks for mates and ticking checklists
    “While there is still a lot of detail for officials and ministers to work through, we envisage that:
    some essential costs, like rent and power, will be paid directly on the young person’s behalf. Money for basic living costs like food and groceries will be loaded onto a payment card that can only be used to buy certain types of goods and cannot be used to buy things like alcohol or cigarettes
    and that a certain, limited amount will be available for the young person to spend at their own discretion.”

    With the transient tenancies of young adults and the tenancy/bond issues, then landlords are gonna love this endless hassle. Unless it is linked directly into eftpos then the local dairies and greengrocers that rely on the bread and butter from the beneficiary community are screwed. With the plethora of local outlets, we have to consider the logisitics of banning the purchase of alcohol and tobacco, so that means either centralised stock id during purchase or a judicial/administrative system to punish the offending dairy/bottlestore owner through audit or dob’ins. Obviously neither is workable so it will be authorised agents for purchase of food, milk and toilet paper. Oh that’s a caring nation at work that is.
    “They can choose a forward-looking National-led Government that is focused on its economic plan for the future, or a rag-tag Labour-led coalition that will take us back in time to the days of tax and spend, and borrow and hope.”
    says the government that raised g.s.t, borrows 300million a week and talks all day of aspirations.

  30. freedom 31

    p.s. anyone know how long this WINZ payment card has been in operation ?
    there are always changes to the system but when you are not in the system anymore you don’t always know when the big stuff slides by and i had not seen this payment card or even heard of it before today


    • freedom 31.1

      thankyou HC
      “Payment Cards” have already been gradually introduced, supposedly on a “voluntary” basis since last year. In reality they have already been more or less imposed on applicants asking for special needs grants for food.”

      Key fiddles while our youth burns

  31. Dan1 32

    Right, looking at my election checklist, that’s beneficiary bashing ticked off! Who is next?….. I guess unions need a stir!

    How predictable!

    Nice to see NACT heartland have doubts about asset sales. Blinglish’s ideology might be wearing thin.

  32. prism 33

    Reid I asked what you were talking about at 5.47pm Since then you have been on making short fatuous comments pretending to be erudite and so superior. if you don’t understand how it works and why removing it from fruit and vege is a massive elephant-size dumb move in the wrong direction, then I fear we venture into off-thread territory so I can’t get into the details, not cause I don’t know them but cause I don’t want to get banned.
    How about reading my comment then making some informed opinion on it instead of moving through the thread dropping a line of simplistic comments or implying you are the great all-knowing one.

  33. felix 34

    reid, you’re a moron.

    Do you have any idea what meth costs in this country?


    • reid 34.1

      If they can’t afford it, how come lots of P cases come before the courts with occupation listed as “beneficiary” and if you think it matters how much they really do use and I don’t care, read my whole post again for you’ve obviously profoundly misunderstood it since I wasn’t saying anything about the quantity, merely that some do, and they do, or are you denying that?

      • Colonial Viper 34.1.1

        A lot of crime is committed which is associated with drugs and alcohol.

        You don’t think you can fund a P habit on the dole do you???

        • reid

          I don’t really care CV it’s only one of many drugs some of them use and it’s time they didn’t anymore, that’s the only point I care about. It’s irrelevant how many are and of those, what they use. I don’t care, it’s not the point. The point is, why let those who do it, do it, on the state’s dime?

          Isn’t that grossly irresponsible, if you did let them do that?

          • Colonial Viper

            You’re framing National’s policy as a youth drug and alcohol policy now?


            Well let’s go for it then. Tell me, how much of an improvement in youth drug and alcohol statistics these changes will likely make?

            • reid

              Not at all CV. I’m framing it as a: it would be a good idea if they had a further obligation to their policy which is compulsory drug testing for all beneficiaries on the dole, sickness and DPB.

              What do you think?

              • Colonial Viper

                I agree, same requirements for all CEOs, legal aid lawyers, city councillors, couriers and policemen.

                But back to the question: how much difference to drug and alcohol usage rates is National’s orange card policy going to make. Any?

                Or are you just improvising on the spot with no actual knowledge of substance dependency and substance abuse issues?

      • felix 34.1.2

        “how come lots of P cases come before the courts with occupation listed as “beneficiary””

        Do you mean “a large proportion of beneficiaries are convicted in court for meth offences”? That would clearly not be true, but it’s the only way to interpret your statement that gives it any relevance to the discussion. So you’re either very wrong there or you meant something else. Would you like to rephrase?

        I suspect what you really meant was that a large proportion of people convicted of meth offences are on a benefit, which may or may not be true but is irrelevant to your claim regardless.

        I’ll give you the benefit of the doubt and assume that was honest mistake on your part, as it’d be a pretty dumb switcheroo to try on purpose.

        “I wasn’t saying anything about the quantity, merely that some do, and they do, or are you denying that?”

        Yeah you did. You said: “What happens to the biochemistry in the brain in young people 16 and over if they smoke a lot of weed and/or P and/or whatever?”

        That was in your first comment in the thread, about four hours before your last one. Remember that? That’s where all this started.

        Might be time you put the pipe down for a bit yourself.

  34. neoleftie 35

    well interestingly if one take’s the ideology out of it you are left with a social engineering scheme.
    surely this give direction and rules to a lost generation which have little future and is in dire need of assistance be it jobs, training or a positive rule set on behaviour and comsumer choices.
    This, to me, is one very bold scheme that holds youth, who rely on state assistance, accountable and goes further and portrays the state as a surrogate parent that these ‘lost’ youth must through rules and governance imposes upon these youth to strive and reclaim a place within contributing society.
    As members of a social democratic state isnt it our duty to provide guidance, rules and opportunities to all members of our community.
    Shall we just give them the dole and simple cast the lost and misguided youth to the wolves of misopportunities and create an expanded underclass.
    This policy is worthy, if implemented properly and with a decorum of dignity and mana, of a confident labour party.
    Surely it’s the states responsibility to provide, through any mean necessary, the very opportunities and life skills set that is required for disadvantageed youth to suceed in the harsh realities of modern society.

    • Colonial Viper 35.1

      Sweet words, misses the point a little doesn’t it?:

      We do not have an political economic structure which creates sufficient jobs for either our youth or our olds.

      Even though there is so much work to be done in society and there is so much capital available in society.

      Surely it’s the states responsibility to provide, through any mean necessary, the very opportunities and life skills set that is required for disadvantageed youth to suceed in the harsh realities of modern society.

      “Through any means necessary” is pretty wording, but how much do you mean it? Because I see enabling one parent to stay at home and raise children full time as a core part of that. And rectifying our appalling rates of child poverty. Expanded training and support programmes for new parents would also be key. As would direct employment and trades programmes for youth.

      Now, I agree with you that it is the state’s responsibility to provide the country’s youth with opportunities and life skills “through any means necessary”. And how much of that does National’s policy deliver. 5%?

      • reid 35.1.1

        Because I see enabling one parent to stay at home and raise children full time as a core part of that.

        So do I CV and how do you plan to re-design consumer society to achieve that for that’s what you’d have to do, to make a middle-class home in Mt Roskill affordable on a single income I mean. I’d be interested in your plans for achieving that.

        Sweet words, misses the point a little doesn’t it? We do not have an political economic structure which creates sufficient jobs for either our youth or our olds.

        CV in case you didn’t notice this was the youth welfare policy not the Job Creation Engine policy which I understand Key is announcing at the Monster Truck Rally at Albany just at the peak of the world cup. I understand fireworks and the cloud will be there as well.

        Isn’t that good news, so we don’t have to keep obfuscating this triumphant policy with silly nonsense about “where’s the jobs” anymore. Thank goodness.

        • Colonial Viper

          So do I CV and how do you plan to re-design consumer society to achieve that for that’s what you’d have to do, to make a middle-class home in Mt Roskill affordable on a single income I mean.

          Consumer society is almost over mate. I give it roughly 5-6 years to stumble along now, and then a steepening decline for the 15 years after that.

          • Deb

            So colonial, if the consumer society goes into decline as you predict, where do you perceive the jobs for unskilled 16-18 year olds will be?

      • neoleftie 35.1.2

        well CV would you rather not engage the disengaged and provide the skill necessary so that they can get a job?
        Would you rather we didnt nothing at all but handed out a state payment and told them shhh just be quiet and dont bother the good folk on the hill or do we as a society create a sitauation where the youth of today must engage and strive to at least be able to be allowed the chance at the life path opportunites.
        Everyone is our inclusive society must have the given opportuties to suceed and not just the few who come from elite class and went to the right private school.
        Isnt it our duty to provide a level of care to all members of our society and surely that care, at a state level, is for the most disdvantaged and downtrodden to be given a mechansim or a multitude of schemes that provides a level of care that just might bootstrap the lost generation up enough so they can get meaningful employment.
        As i see it the only thing stopping the disengaged youth from suceeding in society is education, assistance and a behavioural rule set.
        oh yes pretty words i know…and yes if we can wait for the revolution but can the youth of today.

        • Colonial Viper

          As i see it the only thing stopping the disengaged youth from suceeding in society is education, assistance and a behavioural rule set.

          Yeah. And just remind yourself who took apart apprenticeship and trade training schemes.

          Would you rather we didnt nothing at all but handed out a state payment and told them shhh just be quiet and dont bother the good folk on the hill or do we as a society create a sitauation where the youth of today must engage and strive


          Since when were these the options being considered?

          Who is planning to rebuild Christchurch with foreign tradesmen and foreign labour? At a time of massive youth unemployment?

          Typical bloody NAT, all stick and no carrot.

          Bet you believe that young people should be paid less than other workers for doing the same job. I guess that’s one way to “value” young NZer’s. Less than other people, and on the way, use them as a lever to further suppress all the wages at the low end of the spectrum.

          • neoleftie

            yes yes but everything that is written in blue blood is just sometime not that bad or at least can be utilised by a left govt

          • reid

            You’re quite correct CV dismantling the apprentice framework was and remains a stupid counter-productive move and I hope the ChCh rebuild will revive it in some of the trades and export it to the rest of the country.

            That’s a part-start but it needs drive focus and vigour. I reckon Joyce would be a good man to take that on and deploy it nationally.

            • Colonial Viper

              Joyce will privatise it and let the private sector make more money off the cheap labour those young people represent, while paying the young people less than minimum wage.

              • reid

                No he won’t he’s not a policy maker he’s an implementer par excellence and if we had a few more A-class business people in Parliament we’d have a few more like him but he’s the only one we’ve seen in Parliament for about fifty years.

                Telling, isn’t it.

                • mik e

                  Is that why mediaworks tv3 have had to be bailed out so many times reid make up some more fairytales!

  35. David G King 36

    Am I the only one who noticed that John Key was so out of touch, and so badly briefed, that he identified the IYB as a fourtnightly payment, rather than weekly……at least as reported on stuff.co.nz http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/politics/5441979/National-to-clamp-down-on-youth-beneficiaries

  36. Graeme Taylor 37

    I make lots of money selling stuffed cars to thick youth. I would like to see our youth stay as dumb suckers. They do make me rich.

  37. fabregas4 38

    On Q+A I liked how Holmes called the interview ‘intense’ like he was surprised that some actual questions were asked and that Espiner made comments such as “is that all you can do?”.

    I thought Key was even poorer that usual today and his suck a lemon look at the end of the interview was telling – guess he won’t show on Q+A for a while. But don’y worry Marcus Lush will ask him about driving a digger on Radio Live tomorrow morning.

  38. Colonial Viper 39

    Why does the post say that the orange card will affect roughly 3,300 16 and 17 year olds while Red Alert suggests that only the 1500-1600 youth on the independent youth benefit will be affected?


    • reid 39.1

      What happens if it’s blue CV?

      In fact, if I were the Nats, I’d probably make it red on one side and green on the other, on the grounds the people are really going to hate whomever’s colours are associated with it.

      Wouldn’t that be terrible?

      • Colonial Viper 39.1.1

        Meh, whatever colour card, the brighter it is the more it will help those young people feel victimised and second class.

        • reid

          Not if we make it gold VC. That’s the secret.

          Why is looking after the best interests of these young people helping them “feel victimised and second class?”

          Do you want them to continue the way they have been?


          • Colonial Viper

            Wow. Condemning a whole generation of young people there as being the same. Good on ya.

            Gold cards for oldies right?

          • Puddleglum

            What makes you think this is “looking after the best interests of these young people”?

            What’s the theory that makes it so? Genuine question. 

    • freedom 39.2

      turquoise it seems is the plan

      Key fiddles while our youth burns

    • weka 39.3

      “Why does the post say that the orange card will affect roughly 3,300 16 and 17 year olds while Red Alert suggests that only the 1500-1600 youth on the independent youth benefit will be affected?”
      Because there are more youths on benefits than just the IYB. Also, apparently they’re including 18yr olds on the DPB. I tried to look up the stats on benefits by age, but the youth ones are really hard to find.

  39. infused 40

    Well when I was 17 and had left school, I spent a year playing games and smoking pot (true story). I was getting roughly $170-180… can’t quite remember. Since my dad was supporting me at the time, all I used the cash for was internet, crappy food, booze and pot.

    Was a cool year actually.

    My dad stepped in after a year and kicked me ass. Although I bet some parents wouldn’t.

    I’ve always thought they should give you stamps or pay the bills for you, otherwise people just spend the cash on shit, like I did.

    • Descendant Of Smith 40.1

      1. Here’s another post like the one recently about the employer who rang umpteen employees who turned down his shearing work that doesn’t add up.

      If you can only get a benefit at 17 if you are estranged from your parents then how could you both be getting a benefit and being supported by your father?

      2. People on benefit that I know much prefer the card they now get as opposed to the letter they used to hand over. The letter you handed to the checkout operator was much more obvious than the eftpos looking card used now. The use of a card also means that you can go to more than one place for your groceries and shop around for specials.

      3. You haven’t been able to get cigarettes and alcohol with food grants forever.

      4. Wonder if these provider providers will be penalised if the young girls get pregnant to someone on their course or whether we will see segregated providers for young women?

      5. Always said daddy state would be worse than nanny state.

      6. How much of the rent thing is a sop to landlords who get all antsy when people don’t pay their rent? This taking over of the benefit removes all ability of people to have flexibility in their budget and will make them more dependent not less – break a window, go to the doctor – can’t negotiate with your landlord now to pay less rent this week and pay a bit more next week – only option is to go to state for help. Want to do a deal with your landlord to wallpaper the house for some free rent – it’s now between you the landlord and the state, want to change power companies – you now have to get the state involved to change your payments.

      8. Where is all the money going that this is going to cost? It seems an awful lot of expenditure? Who are these private providers already lined up?

      • weka 40.1.1

        I want to know who the community group providers are too. Looks like a step towards privatising Welfare.

  40. Afewknowthetruth 41


    Why is looking after the best interests of these young people helping them “feel victimised and second class?”

    Can you please explain how completely ignorng all the major issues of the times (population overshooot, peak oil, out of control CO2 emissions, unravelling of fiat currencies, death of the oceans etc.) and driving society straight off the cliff is looking after the best interests of these young people?

    • reid 41.1

      Certainly Afktt.

      Firstly distinguish between these particular young people: those on a benefit, from all those other young people of the same age who aren’t on a benefit and analyse accordingly.

      All those issues you raise in your second para apply generally to all young people and not just to this specific group.

      But with respect to this particular policy “victimising and traumatising” people, occurs how?

      I don’t see that happening, under any configuration.

      So I’m not sure how to respond since they’re all big issues you raise each of which take ages to discuss and yes they do affect this group and others of the same age but, er…

      • Colonial Viper 41.1.1

        Key’s proposals only affect 1600 youth on the independent youth benefit anyway.

        The National Party policy around benefit spending controls largely ignores the other ~58,000 unemployed 19 years of age and under.

        Key getting airtime by ignoring most of the issue; pretty typical.

  41. Marjorie Dawe 42

    Sounds like a daddy state to me!

  42. Campbell Larsen 43

    You don’t get people to behave like adults by treating them like children.
    This is not about youth at all – it is setting a precedent to enable further punitive measures against those whose only fault is the unfortunate ‘moral’ failing of being unemployed.
    This kind of policy belongs in a dark historical chapter of another countries nightmare and has no place in New Zealand.
    If people don’t get paid in cash they can never clear unexpected bills. Never. They can cannot even run a flexible budget that matches their needs from week to week.
    Punish the poor for being poor, and one day they will surely punish the rich for being rich – and with policies like this who could blame them.

  43. Galeandra 44

    @ reid Do you want them to continue the way they have been? asks reid.

    Just for interest’s sake, who are the ‘they’ you are talking about?
    What exactly is the problem with ‘ the way they have been’ that so concerns you?
    All very them and us really. Are you the great white hope?

    Remember, ‘they’ are performing a required service, apparently, inasmuch as ‘ they’ and in some cases their families are occupying the required role of ‘labour surplus to requirement’ in our modern economy.Not by choice.
    No amount of punishment can change youth’s opportunities to take part in the workforce, but reward might offer encouragement to make better choices about how to live in or out of work. Many students do lack essential lifeskills and prove incapable of maximising their educational outcomes, often throughout their entire school careers.Will national standards help this? Will orange cards?

    The surface appeal of Nact’s proposal is very great, especially to all those of an authoritarian cast of mind, or with a tendency to seek simplistic answers to complex issues. Concern about good use of the ‘taxpayer’s dime’ is seemingly justification, too, which is a bit rich concerning this government’s attention to tax reduction at the upper levels, while maintaining the variety of wealth subsidies– in the SCF bailout, the failure to connect ETS charges to farmers and the level of exemption the transport industry gets from road-user charges. That concern about waste of tax revenues by young and idle is a bit like concern trolling, doncha think?

    If the right were genuine, I’d have seen a far more generous funding of the education offered during the last years of my teaching at a decile 5 college. I’d have seen lots more flexibility in the curriculuum offered, I’d have seen my student with access to moderately up-to-date technology, I’d have had texts that weren’t hugely out-of-date. Hell, the kids would all have come to school well-fed.

    I think Vicky32 has the best take on it- you aren’t here to debate genuinely, your tone gives you away, really. Insincere, bit of a wanker.

  44. HC 45

    “Fiddles” – what an understatement!

    This is just a precursor or trial of what is to come for all beneficiaries!

    “Payment Cards” have already been gradually introduced, supposedly on a “voluntary” basis since last year. In reality they have already been more or less imposed on applicants asking for special needs grants for food.

    This will be trialled on the 16 and 17 year olds, and one day it will become the standard for ALL beneficiaries! Payment Cards are designed to become the standard form of benefit payments in future!

    Your spending will be strictly controlled, so that there is no more discretionary spending on what WINZ will deem to be “luxury”, unnecessary or unacceptable (e.g. alcohol and cigarettes).

    The payment of rent directly from WINZ or the follow up agency to landlords will also lead to a wider approach of this being used for ALL benefit recipients in future.

    That way the responsible agency will also try and influence where people live. It will not be far away that they will tell people on welfare, that they will no longer have a free choice about what is acceptable, appropriate or suitable accommodation. The intention will be to save on accommodation supplements.

    This regime has more or less already been drafted, and we are being drip fed.

    One day the unemployed, sick and disabled “job seekers” will all be work-tested, eventually housed in cheap, boarding house style accommodation (modern “poor houses”), forced to take up any “suitable” training, work or study. Any non complience will lead to benefit cuts and cancellations.

    Those that think this is harmless, do not understand the approach being used. It is the beginning of something bigger coming up.

    So if National will get voted back in again, this is what will be in store for all that will face losing their jobs for longer periods, that will be sick, disabled, a sole parent and depend on the state for support.

    We are returning to the times of “poor houses”, “work houses” or “work shops” for the poor and incapacitated.

    That is the great “help” and “assistance” offered by Don Key and his consorts running the show.

    Do not forget, Housing NZ will also throw thousands off waiting lists soon, who are deemed as not being in urgent need for such assistance!

    The right wingers and National and ACT (Aged Candidate Troopers) supporters love this, and that is what is in store for us, if we end up at the bottom of the scrap heap in future under their leadership.

    So think carefully before you vote in November. Many young leaving school or uni without a job will have the best encouragement to leave this place for good, if NAT-ACT get a second term.

  45. They’re going to clamp down on booze and cigarettes?!?!

    That’s it?

    Oh good lord! And people thought that Labour was “Nanny Statist”?!?!

    I wonder who will be next to feel the iron fist of National’s Polit-buro state control? The retired? Civil Servants? Anyone using state hospitals???

    Congratulations, my fellow New Zealanders: we have gone past Nanny State to Big Brother.

    It might be worthwhile considering that,

    * Not all unemployed youth smoke
    * Not all unemployed youth drink
    * Even if they do, Key says that they will still receive “a limited amount of money for young people to spend at their discretion“. Like… on booze and ciggies?!
    * Even if they won’t have enough “discretionary pocket money” – what is to stop them stealing it? Or selling their Food Card for cash, and then buying ciggies and booze?

    In the meantime, how many jobs will this piece of neo-Nanny Statism create?

    The answer, I submit, is: 0

    It is abundantly clear that National has no clue how to address this problem. Attacking welfare benefits which keep people from starving to death, or more likely, breaking into our homes to find food, is not an answer. It is a cheap shot geared toward winning votes from uneducated voters who hold the illusion that living on a benefit is a cosy arrangement (it is not).

    There are no policies being announced to create jobs, or to train young people into a trade or profession.

    National should be throwing open the doors of our polytechs to train young people into tradespeople that the community desperately needs. With the re-building of Christchurch shortly to commence – where are the necessary tradespeople going to come from? (Most have buggered of to Australia.)

    If this is the best that National can come up with, then, my fellow New Zealanders, we are in deep ka-ka.

  46. felix 47

    reidtard and the other apologists for this utter bullshit need to remember the three things that are missing from the National Party’s plan:




    Without those three things, none of this punitive tinkering is worth squat. (Still costs 20 mil though)

    • happynz 47.1

      Honestly, this move by the National party has weak sauce poured all over it. They got nothing, just nothing. They’re rolling out the same old nonsense of bashing the beneficiaries.

      Yup, jobs, jobs and jobs. That’s what is needed.

    • Tangled up in blue 47.2

      Isn’t 10,000 better educated and skilled 18 year olds without a job better than 10,000 less educated and skilled 18 year olds without a job?

      • mik e 47.2.1

        Tuipoo back from conference news 25% of our youth in poverty KEY Announces another ban aid policy to clean up a problem they have created [220 long term youth beneficiaries up 10 fold under national] myopic Key groupies back on standard spin keys BS

        • Tangled up in blue

          The focus on the training and education of around 10,000 16-17 year olds is a good thing.

          The fact that Nationals economic mismanagement has made people worse of as well as them not having a plan to create jobs is still not good enough.

    • KJT 47.3

      Removed 146 million in job training.

      How about spending the amount this piece of idiocy costs in second chance education and apprenticeships.
      Instead of relying on immigration to fill our skills gaps.

    • mik e 47.4

      Don’t forget that growth and re balancing the economy so the rich have more the peasants have less.Read my lips
      we are going to grow the economy at 4% a year with tax cuts YEAH RIGHT
      Catch up with Australia YEAH RIGHT
      No new taxes
      the list goes on!

  47. Bored 48

    Helped her out of a jam I guessed but used a little too much force, eh Blue?

  48. KJT 49

    Young people on long term independent youth benefit, without jobs, under National, about 2500 and increasing. Previously under Labour 220. (Ministry of Social Development).

    If you want to solve the problem, do not vote National!

    • Tombstone 49.1

      Spot on! National failure equals everyone else pick up the fucking tab. Let the Labour revolution begin here and get these bastards out of govt come November! John Key – fail!

    • Deb 49.2

      Let’s not factor in the Global Financial Crisis or the recession KJT. Why bother with such pesky and inconsequential details


      • KJT 49.2.1

        Lets not bother with some inconsequential and pesky details, that every time a more right wing Government is in power the numbers on unemployment benefit increases and the economy goes downhill, whether there is a recession or not!

        There was a pretty conclusive graph, on the Ministry of Social development site, until a short time ago that showed the correlation. Wonder why it was removed??

      • Colonial Viper 49.2.2

        The GFC was caused by the wrong headed free market morons that Key and English kowtow to.

  49. Olwyn 50

    I tried several times to register my disagreement by voting “no” on the Stuff poll, but found that my vote would not go through. Did anyone else have this problem?

    This does look like the thin end of the wedge on two counts: introducing food stamps as part of the dole, and having social services administered by corporations that prefer managing things over making things.

  50. Key fiddles with our youth bums.

    Sick of being a muppet with some fatcats hand up his arse, Key decides to seize the initiative and become the handler instead.

    National…appealing to the paedophile in all of us.

  51. Afewknowthetruth 52

    It seems to me it is time that society started paying MPs and ministers allowances in the form of coupons that can only be redeemed for basic items of food and clothing, bus tickets etc. and cannot be spent on alcohol, cigarettes, drugs, air travel, taxis, hotels, prostitutes, club subscriptions, rugby tickets etc.

  52. randal 53

    this policy is all about creating jobs for hekia parata and her tribe.
    just another dithering policy that aint worth the paper its printed on.

  53. Pete 54

    A great start, and a lot more to follow.

    Well done, John Key.

    • Tiger Mountain 54.1

      @ Pete: a lengthy dissertation in response to your incisive expert opinion on youth employment issues follows:

      Tory fucker extraordinare!

  54. The Voice of Reason 55

    You really should put a sarcasm tag on your comment, Pete, some people might think you’re serious otherwise.

  55. Gosman 56

    “I tell WINZ I’m paying $150 rent when it’s really $100. Even show them my sub-tenancy agreement saying so. Other flatties give me $50 kickback in cash. I buy most of the flat’s food on my payment card. Flatties pay me back in beer.”

    Wow, pretty smart for someone who has a 90 percent chance that they will go on to apply for an adult benefit.

    Someone with that sort of nous should be able to find a proper job with no problem.

    • Vicky32 56.1

      Someone with that sort of nous should be able to find a proper job with no problem.

      If the jobs existed, you moron! People on benefits are not stupid – they’re simply surplus to the banksters requirements.

      • queenstfarmer 56.1.1

        seek.co.nz: 15,391 job listings
        trademe.co.nz: 10,051 job listings
        My neighbour: importing labourers from the Islands for orchard work.

        So that’s right Vicky32, no jobs exist. Or perhaps, just none that you think are good enough.

        • Ianupnorth

          You really are clutching at straws aren’t you?
          OK, Seek has 12500 (or so) FULL TIME jobs, of which 25% pay less than $40K per annum.
          Now this thread is about Youth employment isn’t it?
          OK, did you bother to look at the types of jobs being offered?
          Over 1000 accountancy vacancies – so can a school leaver do that?
          How about one of the 900 engineering jobs, or maybe they could take one of the 800 healthcare professional roles (given no 16/17 has the professional registration to do this).
          Your mate on the orchard must be one of the 78 farming jobs then.
          QSF – the kids training has been cut, do you not get that at all? You cannot place unskilled people in skilled jobs, the majority of jobs are for skilled people.
          Consider this – Wendy’s restaurant in Rotorua – 50 applicants for every one of the 45 jobs (of which half were part time) http://www.rotoruadailypost.co.nz/local/news/quality-sees-extra-staff-hired/3959464/
          This is Key’s NZ!

          • queenstfarmer

            I think your hobby is jumping to wild conclusions. I was simply responding to Vicky32’s silly statement that there are no jobs, when there are, and even sillier suggestion that this is somehow “the banksters” fault, whoever she is actually referring to (ASB & co? Is Kiwibank implicated in this conspiracy?)

            You appear to take exception that not every single job listed would be suitable. Why have you singled out accounting and engineering, and ignored say the 974 Admin & Office Support jobs? Or the 700+ hospitality jobs. Or the 807 manufacturing & transport jobs.

            Fact is there are lots of jobs available to those with sufficient motivation. Yet this thread has demonstrated there are some who are more concerned about not being able to spend benefits on booze than finding work.

            • Vicky32

              and ignored say the 974 Admin & Office Support jobs?

              It’s the 974 Admin and Office Support jobs that I apply for every day. The HR person I referred to above is one of the many employers who’ve responded by pointing out that (although he didn’t say so in his advert) he wanted people with ‘degrees’ in ‘business admin’. (Your daughter if you had one, would not be able to do what my sisters did when they left school in the 1970s, and get typing jobs in small business – nowadays, you need a ‘business degree’ to do filing and make the bosses their afternoon tea!

              Fact is there are lots of jobs available to those with sufficient motivation. Yet this thread has demonstrated there are some who are more concerned about not being able to spend benefits on booze than finding work.

              Utter bollocks as usual. You have of course wilfully misinterpreted what others have said about booze. The unemployed don’t lack motivation, they lack jobs.

            • Frank Macskasy

              Queenstfarmer; I present, for your edification and education, further examples of numbers of unemployed exceeding job vacancies:

              “Applicants queue for 20 jobs at new KFC store”

              “2700 applicants for 150 jobs”

              “10 applicants for every one shelf-stocking job”

              “…about 1000 people applied for just 90 jobs at a new McDonald’s in Mount Maunganui, which is due to open next month.”

              “Applications have flooded in from jobseekers hoping to be a part of the new Bunnings Warehouse team in Glenfield. Advertisements were placed one week ago for the 124 jobs in sales, administration, customer-service and trade specialist areas, and over 1500 applications have been received so far. ”

              The thing about unemployed job seekers is that, with the few exceptions such as the ones above, their job-seeking activities is largely invisible. Being invisible, it is easy for prejudiced critics such as you to make uninformed comments about things that are difficult to determine, and easy to generalise about.

              Except that such generalisations are all still BS.

              You can make all the assumptions you like about the unemployed and the number of job vacancies available – but the facts will still render your assertions meaningless prejudice.

            • felix


              Fact is there are lots of jobs available to those with sufficient motivation. Yet this thread has demonstrated there are some who are more concerned about not being able to spend benefits on booze than finding work.

              Answer me this one simple question: Which are there more of, vacant jobs or people out of work?

              We both know the answer is the latter, you’re not Pete George and I don’t think you’re interested in the “black is white” arguments that some of the junior debsoc members here enjoy, so I’ll just assume you’re answering “the latter”, ok?

              So there definitely has to be some people out of work, right?

              Even if every single one of the people out of work was up at 5am every morning and spent 18 hours doing nothing but going to interviews, the numbers would still be the same, right? ‘Cos there’s still more job seekers than jobs.

              And by the same token, even if every single one of the people out of work didn’t actually want a job, the numbers would still be the same, right? ‘Cos there’s still more out of work than there are jobs.

              More jobs are needed. Is this sinking in at all?

              Nothing the govt does to punish sickness beneficiaries…

              nothing the govt does to punish DPB mums…

              and nothing the govt does to make kids spend their dole on this and not that…

              will create One. Single. Job.

            • freedom

              “suggestion that this is somehow “the banksters” fault, whoever she is actually referring to (ASB & co? Is Kiwibank implicated in this conspiracy?)”

              either you are simply being mischievous with this inane comment,
              which is unlikely, given you first need a sense of humour
              or you genuinely do not know how the world/banking system actually functions,
              in which case your ignorant statement is just really sad

              National’s fanboy idol doesn’t fart without a stockholding in the deal so the privatisation of welfare must be going to earn some serious coin for someone he wants to be friends with, and as his history is banking, well 2+2 is usually 4, plus points of course

              He does not care about creating jobs, why would he, it is of no benefit for him to help people out of poverty. The bankers are hungry for more debt, not the debt from people buying consumer goods and mortgages, no the real debt that comes from desperate economies, heavy handed government and private prisons

            • mik e

              Most of these people don’t have the money to get to where the jobs are, where the farmers can afford to fly in people who are better suited to this type of work.What the problem is long term poverty which has left most people unskilled and unfit unmotivated, boot camps from national were supposed to fix the problem unfortunately as research from overseas had already shown they are a complete waste of time and money after spending $200million on the problem National have created only a few jobs and motivated only a few more at a massive cost of their feel good claptrap

          • davidc

            Ian, where does it say in that article that 2,250 people applied for those jobs?
            The article I read said 7 applied for each job. Not a lot at all.

            • felix

              Perhaps you’d like to provide a link to back that up, davidc. Otherwise, I saw an article that said a zillion people applied which is quite a lot.

              But anyhoo, some more numbers from Ian’s link:

              He went for a job at a petrol station and found out he was one of about 60 applying for one position. He was also one of 40 who applied for three jobs at a supermarket.

              This is pretty standard stuff, david. Anyone looking for work knows this. Anyone with kids looking for work knows this. Anyone with friends looking for work knows this.

              You’d have to be really, really out of touch with what’s going on in NZ right now i you didn’t.

        • Vicky32

          seek.co.nz: 15,391 job listings
          trademe.co.nz: 10,051 job listings

          I go to seek and trademe every day, you plank. Do you have any idea how many of those 15,000 odd jobs on Seek are duplicates? Or triplicates, the same job listed by up to 10 ‘agencies’? (That’s true of most of the admin, call centre and ECE jobs.) I used to make 7-8 applications a day until I was advised by an HR guy not to (all HR people compare notes and it apparently makes me “look desperate”… )
          Then as Ianupnorth points out below, most of them are jobs 16-17 year olds would not be qualified for. The HR woman who emailed me today, turning me down for an admin job for not being young enough today, boasted that she’d had 120 applications for a job paying $30 000 (piss-poor, though still phone numbers to me) and that 4 of them were qualified accounts (I assume the illiterate cow meant accountants) – she was glorifying in our desperation.
          So, yes, you nutmeg, there are no jobs, and I suspect your neighbour is importing foreign workers because he believes he can treat them like shite.

          • Ianupnorth

            Sorry David, when I remember reading it a while back the figure of 50 per job was mentioned, so I wasn’t very diligent; however, refering to the young bloke in the article

            He went for a job at a petrol station and found out he was one of about 60 applying for one position. He was also one of 40 who applied for three jobs at a supermarket.

            Contrary to QSF’s assessment re. the number of jobs, there are not enough for the alleged 16K of youth unemployed, even in the unskilled sector.
            QSF why did I pick those I did about eight categories, 240 for law, 270 for teaching, 650 retail, 607 hospitality, 450 call centre, etc.
            How about considering it by region? 8500 jobs are in the Auckland region, but only a quarter of our population is there (or is that jumping to a wild conclusion?)
            Only 140 full time in the whole of Northland, and most are highly skilled, Southland only 107.
            How about Christchurch – filter that with a maximum entry salary of $40K as I did before – 407 jobs – how many is that per unemployed youth in Canterbury?

          • queenstfarmer

            I’m not having a go at you, but I wonder if your comment that a job paying $30 000 is “piss-poor” suggests the wrong view. I have a friend who recently completed 6 years of full time study, with a huge student loan, who was very grateful to be on a full-time job paying $32,000pa after 6 months of trying to get a job, and having to move to Auckland to do so. I’m sure he expects one day to earn a lot more, but it’s about getting a foot in the door.

            I hear what you’re saying (above) about the pointless need for qualifications. In my experience they are often just a “filtering” device used by lazy HR people. My cousin used to work for a big NZ company and he’d rant about ‘all you kids with your university degrees who don’t know anything, bloody degrees are useless’. My response was ‘maybe, but your firm would never give an interview to someone without a degree!’. And the response about not being young enough is outrageous and unlawful – you should consider reporting that firm to the Department of Labour.

            My neighbour is a very nice old guy who certainly doesn’t import workers so he can treat them like shite (honestly, I hope you don’t demonstrate this sort of militant attitude when talking with prospective employers). I was amazed when he told me he had to import them – and in fact its normal for the industry – because there aren’t enough Kiwis willing to do it.

            FWIW – good luck & stay positive.

            • Vicky32

              I’m not having a go at you, but I wonder if your comment that a job paying $30 000 is “piss-poor” suggests the wrong view.

              Again, you misinterpret me. I didn’t say $30 000 was ‘piss-poor’ for me, but it would be for someone with a family!
              In fact, when I said it was ‘piss-poor’ I was quoting the woman herself who said she’d assumed I wouldn’t want a job paying so poorly. As for reporting her, I’ve tried that with other employers who’ve said I am too old – only to discover that the Labour Dept refer me to the Human Rights Commission, who tell me that they have no teeth! All they can do is issue a rebuke, which is duly ignored.
              Stay positive. How exactly?

              • queenstfarmer

                Stay positive. How exactly?

                I’ve had friends in long term unemployment situations and seen them handle it in different ways. One guy was just brilliant, top guy in his field but for some unfathomable reason took ages to get a job, and that was in a good job market.

                On a harshly political level (when in Rome…), I would try to not to feel victimised (even though you’ve obviously been treated wrongly, per your example) and avoid feeling that anyone owes you a job. Chances are that National will stay in for another term, so if you believe that John Key is deliberately destroying the economy to prevent you from having a job then there will be several more years of grief before Labour is swept to power and instantly creates 100% employment.

                Putting fun polemics aside, I would set some sort of challenge. Eg I decided to run a marathon and found that to be very motivating, plus it shows committment and stick-to-itiveness (run or walk – who cares what time you do it in). I’ve done some charity work (Cancer Society) which was great. And the best volunteer work I’ve done was native tree planting for Doc. Just my $0.02.

                • Bear in mind there are 17000 16-17 year olds also trying to stay positive whilst a multi millionaire uses them as political cannon fodder. I am pretty sure a fair few do not want to be unemployed, I am pretty sure if opportunities existed they would take them.
                  That is where the difference is – one party wants to invest and create a productive society by levying a CGT, the other wants to win favour by hitting the easy to victimise – even more fun when they can’t actually have a mandate via a vote. It is simply unfair.

                  • Indeed, Ianupnorth…

                    This attack on young people is probably the most gutless I’ve witnessed in a long time. (I bet ACT is banging their heads against a wall, lamenting “Why didn’t WE think of this!!)

                    This can go one of two ways;

                    First Road: Key’s bene-bashing of young people will satisfy a deep yearning in the psyche of conservative Baby Boomers, who resent youth for everything they have, and everything Boomers no longer possess. They will simply encourage Key and Co. to kick harder.

                    Second Road: At some moment, the much-vaunted Kiwi Sense of Fairness will engage, and people will recoil in disgust at what is being suggested by National. They will see through the political “dog whistling” and demand that Key focus on job-creation, and not beneficiary-bashing.

                    I am not at all confident at which road the public will take. The Kiwi “sense of fairness” that I thought existed seems to be a very superficial quality in many of our compatriots. (Or maybe the cold, dark, and snow outside is getting too depressing…)

                  • queenstfarmer

                    A CGT policy that is all of 2 months old is suddenly The Answer? I applauded Labour for breaking the CGT hoodoo and support the idea in principle, but unfortunately their plan is so full of holes and rorts that the main jobs it will be creating is for accountants and tax lawyers.

          • Descendant Of Smith

            In my experience too the websites jobs are often filled and still being advertised.

            If the employer has paid for six weeks of advertising the jobs and fills it in the first week then it continues to be advertised in a lot of cases.

            My kids have applied for such jobs only to be told by the employer they filled it 2 or 3 weeks earlier.

            The amount of wasted resource and mental effort that goes into applying for jobs that no longer exist must be soul destroying.

            Even if you measure it as a productivity issue you would have to conceded it’s a drain on productivity in this country – a complete waste of time and effort.

            Profit however before productivity ain’t it.

          • Akldnut

            Vicky you’re not on your own unfortunately – its fucking sad this wanker thinks it’s all our own fault, at my job we had 2 part time jobs advertised and received over 300 emails, over 100 phone calls and about 30 through the door applications.

            There are a lot of good people out there looking for work.

            • Vicky32

              I had a woman ring me today for a
              ‘pre-screening’ (wtf?) and tell me I was one of 120 email applications to be weeded down to 25…
              Very depressing! Meanwhile WINZ are harassing me… 🙁

        • mik e

          Qstf most of the jobs on trademe and seek are the same jobs.Then orchard work locals can’t afford to up root and work for peicemeal wages labour practices on a lot of these orchards are nothing more than bonded labour.The imported labour won’t complain otherwise they are extradited back home and black listed.

    • mik e 56.2

      Well Gsoman National has had 3 years to do something about it and this is their bast shot give me a break. When theirs jobs people want them . jobs that is .I think it would be cheaper for National to export the unemployed and low wage workers to Australia . Sorry they are already doing that and they still have high unemployment.39,000 in this last year .when you look at these numbers the real state of our economy is highlighted .less than 1% growth under Bill English so lets shift the blame is Nationals economic comic policy

  56. Treetop 57

    My question to Key is: Had he made the Training Incentive Allowance available to all who wanted it above level 3 how many people on long term benefits would be in training?

    Brainless taking the TIA away above level three and now he knows he has to clean up the ugly mess which will probably cost more than had he not taken the TIA away. If you don’t have a vote I will manage you.

    170,000 jobs to be created in the next four years and 4 % growth. What a dreamer government we have. Just like with removing the TIA from those it would benefit the most. Had the government introduced a study scheme for those up to age 24 (of school term duration) which is not student allowance or student loan an ugly problem of wasted youth potential would have been partly avoided. Government knew that there was a recession and that youth would be squeezed the most.

    Daddy state will tell you:
    Where to live.
    What to eat.
    Which GP to see.
    What clothes to wear.
    How much electricity to use.
    To own a push bike.

    I doubt that the government really know what the cost is for rent, food, transport, GP visit, power, phone, clothing… It is a fact that a 13 – 17 year old eats more than an adult.

    ON Q & A yesterday Key said that he is concerned about youth suicide. I am too and I do not think that interfering in the lives of 16 – 17 year olds and 18 year olds on the DPB is going to reduce suicide because of the pressure his policy is going to create.

    I know that many 16 – 17 year olds need some help, but the right help is required.

  57. TEA 58

    Treetop 57 : said
    15 August 2011 at 1:37 pm
    Daddy state will tell you:
    Where to live.
    What to eat.
    Which GP to see.
    What clothes to wear.
    How much electricity to use.
    To own a push bike.


  58. Vicky32 59

     Seriously puzzled right now, about why unemployment is such a problem for youth! I’d emailed a company to ask why I had got an instant  rejection in response to my application, a refusal that had said I had none of the required skills… I have them in abundance! She just emailed me back and informed me that I should have realised that ““ the candidate “will ideally have 1-2 years admin experience

    was code for “we want someone who has only just left school”… and my problem was that I had more than 1-2 years admin experience. It seems to me after 2 1/2 years unemployment that “youth” is highly prized, much more than experience! 

  59. Richard 60

    They cant create 170000 jobs, they were predicted in the Primary sector, and the Primary sector isnt going to double its workforce in the next 2 years

  60. Afewknowthetruth 61

    A gentle reminder that in a post peak oil world there can be no economic growth and jobs (in the traditional snese of the word) must inevitablly get harder to come by.

    And there is a new trend to look out for. In recent years the spin doctors told us growth was lower than expected. Now they tell us contraction was less than expected. (Not sure if that applies to Greece, which recently recorded minus 6% growth)..

    ‘Oil fluctuated in New York, after declining for three weeks, as concern that the global economy is slowing countered a less-than-expected contraction in Japan, the world’s third-biggest consumer of crude.

    Futures were little changed after falling as much as 0.6 percent and climbing 0.3 percent. Reports this week may show the U.S. housing industry remained depressed in July and European growth eased last quarter. Japan’s economy shrank at an annualized 1.3 percent rate in the three months ended June 30, compared with the median forecast for a 2.5 percent drop in a Bloomberg News survey of 25 economists.’

  61. Treetop 62

    There are 294 comments on this thread. I want youth to know that Key is a quitter because if he can’t be PM he will quit.

    Would most 16 – 17 year olds take this advise?

  62. Xero was founded by Rod Drury in 2006, who made $65 million in the same year after selling his email archiving system AfterMail.


    Xero purchased Australian online payroll company, Paycycle, in July of this year for A$1.5 million.


    Which begs the question as to why the government has given away $4 million of tax-payers money when the owner is ‘flush’ with $65 million and has enough capital to buy off-shore companies elsewhere.


    Is this a prudent use of tax-payers’ money, especially when,

    * government is cutting back on social services?

    * government has cut back on youth training programmes?

    * government is borrowing $380 million a week, and telling the rest of us to “tighten our belts”?

    At a time when government is berrating unemployed 16 and 17 year olds for being on the dole and “smoking ciggies”, instead of providing meaningful training and/or employment, it seems that National is still “picking winners” in the field of commerce.

    $4 million could go a long way in providing training, and a future, for many 16 year olds.

    It’s a shame they’re not “picking winners” with our unemployed youth.

    • mik e 63.1

      Frank They are too busy with their nose in the big banks trough to come up with workable policy

      • Mik e – they certainly seem to be pre-ocuupied with something! Though with what, precisely, I can’t fathom.

        Are they really naive enough to wait for thwe “invisible hand of the free market” to address our unemployment – and especially youth unemployment problems? (Personally, I put my faith in Pixies, Timelords, and Superman.)

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  • Hard News: Poll Pot and the partisans
    Yesterday's Horizon poll showing support for a "Yes" vote in this year's cannabis referendum sliding into the majority for the first time in a year looked like good news for reformers – and it probably is. But the result warrants some scrutiny.The poll is the fifth in a series commissioned ...
    1 week ago
  • Why those bubbles are so important
    For almost a week now, every one of us who isn’t an essential worker has been confined to their bubble. We are allowed to go shopping for groceries, to visit the doctor, and to get a bit of exercise if we stay local. The reason we are doing this is ...
    SciBlogsBy Siouxsie Wiles
    1 week ago
  • A Government System That Works
    The Covid-19 saga will no doubt produce many twists and turns for us before it is finally brought to an end. But one thing it has shown us – and what comfort it should bring us – is that our country’s government is in good hands. I am not thinking ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    1 week ago
  • Smashing down the barriers: Where are we at with COVID vaccines?
    In the absence of a vaccine or a cure for a deadly disease, staying home in your bubble is what you do, the concept is not new.  To the best of my knowledge last time we did this in NZ was for polio, in the years before a vaccine came ...
    SciBlogsBy Helen Petousis Harris
    1 week ago
  • National Network on Cuba (USA): “Cuban medical solidarity is a pillar of its society and is founde...
    The following statement was released on March 28 by the National Network on Cuba, a coalition of 40 groups, based in the United States. In recent weeks, Cuba has deployed hundreds of medical providers to over a dozen countries in Europe, Asia, as well as to their neighbors in Latin ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago

  • Decisions made on urgent turf maintenance
    The Sport and Recreation Minister Grant Robertson has announced that urgent maintenance of turf and care for plants in non-plantation nurseries will soon be able to go ahead under Level 4 restrictions. “The Government has agreed that urgent upkeep and maintenance of biological assets will be able to go ahead ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 hours ago
  • Acknowledging an extraordinary te reo champion
    E tangi ana a Taranaki iwi, e tangi ana te ao Māori, otirā e tangi ana te motu. Mōu katoa ngā roimata e riringi whānui ana, mōu katoa ngā mihi.   E te kaikōkiri i te reo Māori, e Te Huirangi, takoto mai. Takoto mai me te mōhio ko ngā ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 hours ago
  • Prime Minister’s remarks halfway through Alert Level 4 lockdown
    Today is day 15 of Alert Level 4 lockdown. And at the halfway mark I have no hesitation in saying, that what New Zealanders have done over the last two weeks is huge. In the face of the greatest threat to human health we have seen in over a century, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 hours ago
  • Licenses, WoFs and regos extended under lockdown
    All driver licences, WoFs, CoFs, and some vehicle certifications, that expired on or after 1 January 2020 will be valid for up to six months from 10 April 2020, Transport Minister Phil Twyford has announced. “People shouldn’t have to worry about getting fined for having an expired document if driving ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    10 hours ago
  • Inquiry report into EQC released
    The Government has today released the report from the Public Inquiry into the Earthquake Commission chaired by Dame Silvia Cartwright.  Minister Responsible for the Earthquake Commission Grant Robertson says the Government wants to learn from people’s experiences following the Canterbury earthquakes and other recent natural disasters. “Dame Silvia’s report documents ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    10 hours ago
  • More time for health workers and elderly to get flu vaccine
    The Government has extended by two weeks till April 27 the amount of time priority groups, such as health workers and those aged over 65, have to get their flu vaccine before it is made available to the wider public. This year’s vaccination campaign is a key component of the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    13 hours ago
  • Communities step up to help New Zealanders stay connected and fed during lockdown
    Communities stepping up to help New Zealanders stay at home to break the transmission of COVID-19 and save lives have received Government support, said Minister for Social Development Carmel Sepuloni. “Delivering groceries for the elderly who can’t shop online, providing data packs for low income families to keep them connected, and being ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • 120 COVID-19 testing centres now operating
    Across New Zealand 120 sites are taking samples to be tested for COVID-19.   68 community based assessment centres (CBACs) have been established to take samples from people with COVID-19 symptoms. Alongside this, 52 other centres including designated general practices, swabbing centres, and mobile clinics are now testing people for ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Covid19: Government moving quickly to roll out learning from home
    The Ministry of Education is working with partners to develop a package of options so that students can learn at home when Term 2 begins on 15 April, Education Minister Chris Hipkins said today. Supports are also being prepared for households with children under five, to help parents and whānau ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Making learning from home accessible to Māori learners and whānau
    Māori Television to begin educational te reo programmes Ki te Ao Mārama – a new online learning space Thousands of hard copy learning packs ready for distribution Helpdesk and advice service for kōhanga, kura and wharekura Television, the internet and hard copy learning packs are some of the ways whānau ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • New Zealand to provide assistance to Vanuatu following Tropical Cyclone Harold
    Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters has announced an initial package of support to help the people and the Government of Vanuatu respond to the impact of Tropical Cyclone Harold. “Our Pacific neighbours have been hit by a Category 5 Cyclone at the same time as dealing with the economic impacts ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Planning for the future of tourism
    Tourism New Zealand to lead work reimagining the way tourism operates in post-COVID-19 world. Ministers to review International Visitor Conservation and Tourism Levy investment plan. The Government, industry and business are working together to develop a plan for how tourism will operate in a post-COVID-19 world, Tourism Minister Kelvin Davis ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • NZ horticulture sector feeding Kiwis and the world during COVID-19
    More New Zealanders are taking up the chance to work in horticulture as the sector keeps New Zealanders fed and in jobs during the COVID-19 Alert Level 4 lockdown. “Our horticulture sector has long been one of New Zealand’s export star performers, contributing around $6 billion a year to our ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Work to repurpose PGF funds begins
    The Provincial Development Unit is working through applications and projects to see where Provincial Growth Fund money can be repurposed for initiatives deemed more critical to fighting the economic impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic, Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones says. “We need to be throwing everything we have at ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • A million workers supported by Govt wage subsidy
    The Government’s wage subsidy to protect jobs and keep workers and businesses connected during the lockdown has now supported over a million New Zealanders, with $6.6 billion already paid out. “We’re supporting businesses to pay wages, and stay connected with their workers so that we are all in a better ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Government helps Pacific communities fight COVID
    The Government is stepping up efforts to help protect New Zealand’s Pacific communities in the fight against COVID-19. Cabinet has agreed that $17 million will be allocated to support a COVID-19 Pacific Response Package, which will: Support Pacific health and disability services facing increased demand; Ramp up public health messaging ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Statement from the Prime Minister on Dr David Clark
    “Yesterday evening the Health Minister advised me of his trip to a beach during the lockdown and offered his resignation,” Jacinda Ardern said.  “Under normal conditions I would sack the Minister of Health. What he did was wrong, and there are no excuses.  “But right now, my priority is our ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Statement from David Clark
    Last night as part of my preparation for the Epidemic Response Committee, I provided the Prime Minister with a complete picture of my activity outside my home during Alert Level 4.  That included the fact that on the first weekend of the Alert Level 4 lockdown I drove my family ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • COVID-19 mental health support begins
    A range of support is being rolled out across New Zealand to help people look after their mental health during COVID-19 Health Minister David Clark said this morning. “COVID-19 has brought a lot of uncertainty into our lives and many of us will be feeling some level of distress or ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • New Zealanders in Peru to be assisted by Government charter flight
    The New Zealand Government has made arrangements to charter a flight for New Zealanders stranded in Peru to depart the country, following agreement with the Chilean government to allow the necessary transit through Chile, Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters announced today. “Like many travellers around the world at the moment, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • COVID-19 Hospital Preparation Well Advanced
    Hospital preparations for COVID-19 are well advanced says Health Minister David Clark. “Hospitals across New Zealand are repurposing buildings and training staff to get ready for COVID-19 patients. This gives me confidence that we are well prepared for any potential increase in COVID-19 patients needing hospital level care,” said David ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Further measures to support businesses
    The Government will be introducing legislation to make changes to the Companies Act to help companies facing insolvency due to COVID-19 to remain viable and keep New Zealanders in jobs. The temporary changes include: Giving directors of companies facing significant liquidity problems because of COVID-19 a ‘safe harbour’ from insolvency ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Govt’s COVID plan, economic strength recognised
    The Government’s plan to cushion the blow of COVID-19 by supporting incomes, jobs and businesses, and position the economy to recover has been backed by another international report. International credit rating agency Moody’s today reaffirmed its highest Aaa credit rating on New Zealand, saying the economy is expected to remain ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Government supports air services to offshore islands
    The Government has stepped in to support vital air links to our offshore islands, the Chatham Islands, Great Barrier Island and Motiti Island, Transport Minister Phil Twyford announced today. “As part of our $600 million support package to minimise the impacts of COVID-19 on the aviation sector, the Government has ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Funding certainty for sports through COVID-19
    National sports organisations have been given certainty of funding to ensure they can remain viable through the COVID-19 pandemic, Sport and Recreation Minister Grant Robertson announced today. “The global spread of COVID-19 has had a significant impact on sport and recreation in New Zealand, including the cancellation or postponement of ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Butchers now allowed to process pork
    Changes have been made to allow butchers to process pork, only for supply to supermarkets or other processors or retailers that are open, Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor has announced. “We carefully weighed the risk of allowing butchers to open their shops for retail customers, but the risk of spreading COVID-19 ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Essential workers leave scheme established
    Essential workers who take leave from work to comply with public health guidance are being supported with a leave scheme to ensure they will continue to receive income, say the Minister of Workplace Relations and Safety Iain Lees-Galloway and Minister for Social Development, Carmel Sepuloni. A number of essential businesses ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Govt WhatsApp helps share COVID-19 information
    A Government WhatsApp channel has been launched to help make information more easily accessible and shareable in the fight against COVID-19. Govt.NZ, which is free to use on any mobile device, will carry information and news for the public, businesses, healthcare providers, not for profits and local government. It can ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Managed departure plan for stranded foreign nationals enables safe, orderly exit
    The Government has announced a plan to enable the safe, orderly exit of tens of thousands of stranded foreign nationals from New Zealand during the current COVID-19 Alert Level 4 restrictions, Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Winston Peters has said. “When we moved into lockdown a week ago, the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Government delivers COVID-19 support to GPs and Pharmacies
    Health Minister Dr David Clark says the Government is delivering on its commitment to support general practice doctors and nurses, and pharmacies on the front-line of our fight against COVID-19. "For us to overcome COVID-19, we need community health services such as general practice and community pharmacy to step up ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Susan Thomas the new Chief High Court Judge
    Justice Susan Thomas has been appointed Chief High Court Judge, Attorney-General David Parker announced today.  She replaces Justice Geoffrey Venning who has resigned from the position.   David Parker paid tribute to Justice Venning, who he said had stewarded the High Court very capably over the last five years.   “On behalf ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Business Finance Guarantee – applications open
    Businesses can start applying to their banks for loans under the Business Finance Guarantee Scheme set up to support the New Zealand economy during the COVID-19 pandemic. “We’re moving quickly to protect New Zealand businesses, jobs and the economy during this unprecedented global economic shock,” Finance Minister Grant Robertson said. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Work starts on ways to fast-track consents to boost recovery from Covid-19 downturn
    Work is underway looking at measures to speed up consents for development and infrastructure projects during the recovery from COVID 19, to provide jobs and stimulate our economy.  Environment Minister David Parker said the COVID-19 pandemic is a serious global crisis that will have a wide ranging and lasting impact ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Advance payments to support contractors
    Advance payments will be made to transport construction industry contractors to retain the workforce and ensure it is ready to quickly gear up to build projects which will be vital to New Zealand’s COVID-19 economic recovery, Transport Minister Phil Twyford announced today. He said keeping the workforce required to build ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Government seeks infrastructure projects
    The Government has tasked a group of industry leaders to seek out infrastructure projects that are ready to start as soon as the construction industry returns to normal to reduce the economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, Economic Development Minister Phil Twyford and Infrastructure Minister Shane Jones say. The Infrastructure ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Health system scaled up to prepare for COVID-19
    Work to scale up the health system in preparation for COVID-19 was today outlined by Health Minister David Clark, as he reported back to the new Epidemic Response Committee. “We are well placed to contain the spread of COVID-19. We have taken early and decisive action at our borders, and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Essential media COVID-19 guidelines refined
    The Government is refining its COVID-19 essential business guidance to include the distribution of news publications for communities which are hard to reach. The Minister of Broadcasting, Communications and Digital Media, Kris Faafoi, said the move was in recognition of the importance for New Zealanders who might be harder to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Supermarkets able to open on Easter Sunday
    The Government is ensuring supermarkets can open on Easter Sunday so we can buy groceries, but stay closed on Good Friday allowing workers to take a break. This provides a balanced approach and ensures we avoid large queues that two days closure may cause. “Supermarkets will be able to open ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • New Zealand defence personnel conclude mission at Taji
    Following the successful conclusion of the Building Partner Capacity (BPC) mission at Taji, New Zealand defence personnel are returning to New Zealand from Iraq, in accordance with the Cabinet decision made in June 2019, Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters and Defence Minister Ron Mark announced today. “New Zealand is very ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • State of National Emergency extended
    The State of National Emergency to help stop the spread of COVID-19 has been extended for a further seven days, Minister of Civil Defence Peeni Henare said. The initial declaration on March 25 lasted seven days and can be extended as many times as necessary. “Since we went into isolation ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago