- Date published:
12:30 pm, December 16th, 2015 - 206 comments
Categories: benefits, class war, john key, welfare - Tags: beneficiary bashing, child poverty, drug test, drugs, excuses, lies, poverty
I don’t think that it’s possible for the depths of Key to surprise me any more, but this certainly came close:
John Key: Drug abuse major contributor to child poverty
John Key says drug dependency is a major contributor to New Zealand poverty.
The latest Child Poverty Monitor suggests poverty is much worse that it was in the 1980s.
He said issues like drug dependency were key factors that locked people out of the labour market and in poverty. …
There are just three teeny tiny problems with this nonsense:
(1) Beneficiaries aren’t using drugs in any substantial numbers. In fact, that Nats are even crowing about this:
Minister claims low drug result as victory
Drug testing of beneficiaries is turning up an extremely low number of results showing drug use – and a lot of missing information about the controversial policy.
Of the 8,001 beneficiaries sent for jobs requiring drug testing, only 22 tested positive to drug use or refused to take tests.
The low number of results has been greeted as a victory by Social Development Minister Paula Bennett, who says the policy is driving beneficiaries away from using drugs. …
(2) Participating in the “labour market” is no guarantee of escaping poverty. Welcome to the world of the working poor.
(3) Poverty is clearly a function of large scale economic forces (not individual choices like drug use). Poverty has increased hugely since the neoliberal economic reforms of the 80’s and 90’s. It fell slightly with the introduction of Working for Families. It is rising again under the Nats. In short – it’s the economy, stupid.
Key needs to stop trying to deflect from his government’s appalling record on child poverty. Stand up and take some action.