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Minimum wage increase doesn’t meet real costs (the CPI is broken)

Written By: - Date published: 7:02 am, January 25th, 2017 - 53 comments
Categories: class war, cost of living, national, poverty, spin, wages - Tags: , , , , , , ,

Any increase in the minimum wage is better than nothing:

Government to increase minimum wage to $15.75

On 1 April, the adult minimum wage will increase by 50 cents to $15.75 an hour.

Mr Woodhouse said the increase to $15.75 would benefit about 119,500 workers and would increase wages throughout the economy by $65 million per year. The increase was much higher than annual inflation, he said.

“At a time when annual inflation is 0.4 percent, a 3.3 percent increase to the minimum wage will give our lowest paid workers more money in their pockets, without hindering job growth or imposing undue pressure on businesses.” …

Sounds good?* Only because inflation (CPI) doesn’t include major real cost increases, notably in housing.

But Labour’s workplace relations spokesperson, Iain Lees-Galloway, said that was cold comfort to those low-income earners who were struggling to pay their rent.

“The government has sold it as being an increase which is well above the inflation rate but the truth is, when you include housing inflation, it simply doesn’t make up for the enormous additional costs that homeowners and renters are facing.”

Let’s dig in to this further.

The skyrocketing cost of buying an existing house is not included in the CPI (“Inflation is 0.4 percent, and Mr Eaqub calculates that if house price growth was included, inflation would have been 2.5 percent, or more, in each of the last three years”).

The cost of rent is factored into the CPI with a weighting of 10%, in fact for low income earners rent can be 40% to 50% of their income or more (“The report said the lowest 20 percent of earners spent 54 percent of their income on housing in 2015, compared with just 29 percent in the late 1980s”). So the CPI already massively underestimates the real inflation that low income earners face – and rents are rising fast in Auckland and elsewhere.

There are similar issues with other basics like electricity, which is how power prices have risen more quickly than the CPI.

Such problems were identified in a 2013 CPI review:

One-size CPI doesn’t fit all

The consumer price index (CPI) is letting superannuitants, Maori and the poor down.

Last week, it was reported how massive rises in the cost of house insurance were not reflected in the CPI. But it seems homeowners are not the only people who can feel hard done by.

The real experience of inflation for Maori, superannuitants, the poor and some regions is that the national CPI does not reflect their experiences because the it is skewed to reflect the experience of white, middle-income New Zealand.

That has been spelled out by a CPI Review Committee, headed by former retirement commissioner Diana Crossan, which said: “Lower-income households had the highest price change and higher-income households had the lowest price change.”

The current lack of sub- national indexes is not considered to be best practice internationally. The International Labour Organisation says: “Significant differences in the expenditure patterns and/or price movements between specific population groups or regions may exist.” …

In short, the CPI is broken, especially with respect to housing. (Over the last three years we have developed a better measure, why aren’t we using it?). Under National minimum wage increase have failed to keep up with the real cost increases experienced by low income earners. That is why we are seeing the rise of the working poor, and increases in homelessness and poverty. Shame.

 



* National’s pet blogger tried to spin the snakeoil on Twitter too – an interesting discussion followed.


Oh – and on that old lie that minimum wage increases are job killers:

Minimum wage increases do not appear to be choking the job market

Critics of raising the minimum wage have long claimed the real victims are the poor, because employers cannot afford to take on new workers. “The Government knows very well that hiking the minimum wage faster than inflation means those most vulnerable are priced out of the job market,” Taxpayers’ Union executive director Jordan Williams said, echoing similar warnings from last year.

But in the third quarter of 2016, unemployment fell below 5 per cent for the first time since 2008. The number of hand written signs on shops and restaurants across New Zealand seeking staff this summer is hardly scientific, but it suggests the constraint many companies face is finding workers, not paying them.

Below 5% is a fudged stat “achieved” by a change in the definition of job seeking, but even so steady increases in the minimum wage of the current magnitude have not caused a problem – we can afford bigger increases.

53 comments on “Minimum wage increase doesn’t meet real costs (the CPI is broken)”

  1. Carolyn_nth 1

    oh, so looking at the linked twitter debate, DPF is accusing the government’s critics (as indicated in the above post) of presenting “alternative facts”. Yet, it is DPF and the government that is mis-representing the reality for low income people.

    Through the looking glass stuff – government says “poverty is exactly what I say it is”

    • Keith 1.1

      We in NZ have had 8 years of alternative facts from the master himself John Key and his poodle David Farrar. We are now veterans of this 1984 world.

  2. Keith 2

    Honestly, were it not for this pseudo minimum wage rise PR stunt annually, wage growth in this country would be nil, which in reality it is. And the Nat’s know it.

    And I say “pseudo” because National know they have got the immigrant desperation for residency competition level so high it leads to employees accepting of under the table – sub minimum wages, which keeps enough employers/donors happy and makes the minimum wage level a mockery.

    And if you don’t believe that there is enough evidence of the very few, tip of the iceberg, investigations our “officials” carry out into wage and conditions exploitation by employers in the hospitality industry. Of course most are smarter employers still exploiting all the same with the same desperate migrants but balance staff low wages with just enough incentive or even worse disincentive to keep them from doing something about it.

    • Skeptic 2.1

      Yep – between “Labour Hire” companies, decentralised apprenticeship training, low paid immigration workers and temps, and “commissions” for the major rebuild players, no wonder the EQ rebuilds are ripping off the taxpayer big time.

  3. DH 3

    There does look to be a flaw in the way they’re collecting data on rents. The rent index in 2016 was 1233 and that just can not be right. Rents nationwide must have increased by way more than 23.3% since 2006.

  4. jcuknz 4

    I do not trust the figures coming from either side as I know figures can be made to prove anything and have known and seen this happening for decades. The make-up of the CPI has been unrealistic for ever … so it is not broken just assembled incorrectly and has been since it started I guess.

    • Skeptic 4.1

      Quite correct – it was changed in 1991 when the Bolger government was embarrassed by the impact of the Employment Contracts Act

  5. Bob 5

    “Inflation is 0.4 percent, and Mr Eaqub calculates that if house price growth was included, inflation would have been 2.5 percent, or more, in each of the last three years”
    So the fact that National have raised the minimum wage by 3.4%, 3.3% and 3.2% (greater than Mr Eaqub’s adjusted inflation numbers) over this 3 year period is a good thing or a bad thing Anthony?

    You seem to have written a big piece on why the CPI is broken as a measurement, and ignored the fact that minimum wage increases have outstripped even the adjusted CPI rates that you mention.
    Is this actually a covert piece congratulating the National party on looking after the lowest earners in our society?

    • I don’t think the lowest earners in our society are buying a lot of houses. You might need to read it again.

    • saveNZ 5.2

      Don’t forget Mr Eaqub ex Goldman Sachs Group Inc, also advised people for many years not to buy a property as it was a bad investment – since then in Auckland most properties have doubled in price. So personally I’m not going to rely on any of Mr Eaqub’s figures.

      Economists clearly don’t live in the real world or can actually think beyond their own paper based world view. Most of them are the enablers of neoliberalism.

    • UncookedSelachimorpha 5.3

      @Bob.

      Mr Eaqub’s figure of 2.5% relates to national house price growth. It does not capture the cost of housing faced by low-income people i.e. people on the minimum wage.

      If you jump on the reserve bank CPI calculator and choose housing inflation, you can see there has been a 35% increase (10.5% compounded annually) in cost of housing in the three years from Q2 2013 to Q2 2016. Presumably this is across-the-board, and some locations (I guess Auckland) are much higher than this.

      Re-read the original post and note where it says low-income people pay around 54% of their income on housing. So housing alone likely contributes over 5% p.a. (10.5% x 54%) increase in total cost of living, before adding non-housing inflation. The minimum wage increases you mention don’t cover this – in fact will cover less than half the actual increase in cost of living, for many poor people.

      So no, National are watching the poor become much poorer under their watch and are allowing the minimum wage to fall in real terms.

      • DH 5.3.1

        No doubt they’ll have their excuses ready but there’s still a good political angle in that RBNZ CPI calculator. They’re so ashamed of their misleading CPI they don’t even use the CPI data when calculating housing inflation.

        (On that site they’re using the House Price Index from PropertyIQ as a reference)

        • UncookedSelachimorpha 5.3.1.1

          Thanks, good point.

          One question I don’t know the answer to – the degree to which house sales prices and housing rents are linked. Obviously they will be linked, but how closely?

  6. Siobhan 6

    I would like to see a a bigger conversation around the labour income share, or LIS.
    It’s hard work trying to ferret around on the internet and figure out where we actually stand right now. But to me this is the most important factor…’What share of the wealth, what share of the ‘economy’ are the workers, ALL workers, actually getting.

    Personally, if Labour stepped forward and spelt out the numbers, and said we are going to legislate companies into giving workers a decent slice of the economic “cake” I might consider them to be an actual bona fide Labour Party.

    • UncookedSelachimorpha 6.1

      Completely agree!

      This issue is at the heart of rising inequality and social deterioration in the last 30 years. And is a good number for public discussion that many can appreciate and understand.

      Piketty wrote a fair bit about this in his book.

  7. saveNZ 7

    Clearly CPI is not working! Rents are high because property prices are high and all the expenses relating to property are exorbitant and have sky rocketed up, such as insurance and repairs like plumbing or building. Any up grades such as insulation, heat pumps and so forth will set someone back around $10k depending on the size of the house.

    The reason prices are not falling in property are also because it still costs more to build a new house than to buy an old one and inward immigration numbers is at a record high. The density is not working as people are using the rules to build more expensive properties and actually knock the cheaper ones down OR lock people into expensive Body Corporate levys with apartments that are more expensive to build and have much greater expenses that owners can’t control like the BC fees.

    Terraced housing without BC is a better option but in areas where this is happening they are going like hot cakes and the prices are now beyond what a person on an average wage can afford. This should have been what was built on the bare land SHA by the government.

    I still can’t believe why more people are not holding the government to account for the sale of state houses. It is madness and stupidity all in one unless you really are corrupt arseholes.

    It would have been cheaper to upgrade the state houses or make better use of the sites, than to sell them cheap and then subsidise developers selling houses and rocketing the prices of those affordable houses up and selling them to flippers.

    • Siobhan 7.1

      Its mind blowing that landlords can still go out there, buy an overpriced house, charge rents above what the market can afford…and be subsidised to the tune of $2.2 billion a year, not to mention help with insulation and heating etc to bring their investment up to standard.

      Why on earth is the tax payer propping this failed business model?.

      Landlords should step aside, let the market go down, and let working families buy their own homes. Especially in the so called poorer areas. I can’t believe it when people tell me they are buying an investment property in some working class neighborhood, with absolutely no shame over outbidding some poor family who just want to put down roots somewhere.

      • saveNZ 7.1.1

        I think you will find that landlords are stepping aside in Auckland and selling their properties…. that’s why there is a massive shortage of rental properties….

        Apparently even in the small ghost towns of NZ, landlords are getting out of the market and now their is a massive shortage…

        Added to the fact that nobody can afford to pay rent anymore on NZ’s crap wages which is why the government subsidies employers wages with working for families and accommodation supplement.

        If there were loads of landlords then there would be plentiful rentals… there isn’t (in Auckland at least), that’s not happening because over $200,000 people need accommodation here at the current working visa, student visa and migration levels….

        • Siobhan 7.1.1.1

          “Apparently even in the small ghost towns of NZ, landlords are getting out of the market and now their is a massive shortage”

          I’m not sure about that. Think about it logically.
          Are small towns full of empty houses while the population sleeps in their cars??
          That seems odd.
          Why, if there are people in those towns needing a house, are they not buying the houses as the landlords ditch them?? Are the ex landlords pricing their now vacant houses out of the true realistic market??

          • Sabine 7.1.1.1.1

            where my partner and i bought is not quite a ghost town, but on the other side it also has nothing much going for it.
            We bought there as my partner has been shifted by his company to work out of the next larger city and we liked the house/garden.

            Most of the houses that are selling – again like clockwork literally every 12 month, is by out of towners who buy these houses as a batch for their anual holiday and the rest of the year these houses are on book a batch.

            Rentals are very very hard to come by in my little ghost town, and the houses there are now out of reach for locals that work part time, casual or are full time in dairy / other farming.

  8. Skeptic 8

    The problem with this “minimum wage” debate is it’s so constrained by neo-lib/neo-con parameters masquerading under the guise of “Economics 101”. Well, really? Whose economics – Milton Friedman’s? Chicago School economics? The current generation of debaters knows no other and accepts blindly the opinions of Don Brash and his ilk. Regrettably for them (the neo-cons, etc) Friedman’s “Freedom to Choose”, the basis for almost all modern Economics studies – is unfortunately an Americanized version of Adam Smith’s Wealth of Nations (duly updated and modernized by ideology) written in 1776. Like most single track American Professors, Friedman ignored Smith’s earlier work “Theory of Moral Sentiments”. This earlier work postulated that an individual’s life (male or female) is made up of four overlapping influences, family life, community life, personal life and business life, with separate and distinct modes of engagement for each. Characteristics of altruism, selfishness, necessity etc affect individual behaviour in each sphere to varying degrees. Generalities for business are different from and cannot be replicated for family life, nor community or personal life. Friedman was either unaware of this or chose to ignore it; so to do adherents to the Chicago School of Economics and all neo-cons and neo-libs. They also forget there are many, many other types of economies than “free market”, most of which are better. These range from co-ops, collectives, Keynesian, interventionist to name just a few. When looking at the minimum wage in this light, and falsely impressing the “inflation” scare on this, one is merely “thinking inside the box”. Sorry, neo-cons, but just like Friedman, you’re imprisoned within your own argument and ignorance of other economic theories. Anyone who has come across the Mondragon system knows that to prevent extreme income/wealth divergence the lowest income bracket must be tied permanently to a percentage of the highest – this can a ratio range of 1 to 3, to 1 to 7. Any higher than that, the perception of unfairness isolates, marginalizes and excludes sections of the workforce creating inefficiency and disinvolvement. As far as the NZ minimum wage goes, anything less than an independently assessed “livable wage” (currently $19.30/hr) as the absolute minimum is unjust, and unacceptable in a country of just 4.5m. This “livable wage” should be the minimum demanded by every New Zealander as a matter of birthright. The answer is to legislate for a “minimum wage” directly tied to a percentage of the average of the top 10% income bracket (say 20% for example). If this were to happen, two direct consequences would be almost immediate. The top CEOs who cared about NZ would immediately moderate their income packages (the rat bags would squeal like stuck pigs and fuck off – good riddance) and much disharmony in the workforce would disappear as “fairness” would replace “greed”. I have however yet to see any Political Party in this country with the courage to articulate such as policy – will we ever?

    • Wayne 8.1

      Well, Labour has its chance. A minimum wage of $20. An easy to remember figure.

      Probably about $3.50 to $3.75 above what it will be in April 2018, if the current order of increases continues. I am assuming under National (if they are elected) next years announcement would be 50 cents or 75 cents.

      Surely $20 would be enough to prove to Standardnistas that Labour has broken its neo-liberal shackles. Or would it simply show that Labour is keeping neo-liberalism alive by softening its edges?

      • james 8.1.1

        of course they will not do this – because even labour know its unworkable.

        They will gnash and moan, and then do exactly the same thing.

        • Skeptic 8.1.1.1

          “of course they will not do this – because even labour know its unworkable.”

          Sorry James, but google search “Mondragon” and find out – shock horror – it has worked so well for 70 years in Spain that many of the longest lasting and top Corporations in the EU have adopted it. Of course, the UK, USA & Aust are so far behind the EU they’re an insider joke – just like Kiwi employers (you know what EU insiders call Kiwi employers – JACKEs – Just Another Cheapskate Kiwi Employer). I think that about sums up the real reputation of NZ business people overseas – they really should be embarrassed – but I think they’re too egotistical to care.

          • james 8.1.1.1.1

            Just checking you are putting Spain up showing us how to do it correctly and as a working example.

            Lets look at this shall we:
            Spain

            Youth unemployment – 44%
            Unemployment rate – 18.91%
            Government Debt to GDP 99.2 %

            New Zealand
            Youth unemployment – 11.1%
            Unemployment rate – 4.91%
            Government Debt to GDP 24.6 %

            No wonder the EU is stuffed with brilliant insiders like that.

            • Skeptic 8.1.1.1.1.1

              Did you check “Mondragon”? When you do please respond.

              • James

                No I looked up Spain and smart arse EU insiders then laughed at the figures that someone was trying to tell me how well it worked in Spain.

                I’ll quite happily stick with it didn’t work.

                • Skeptic

                  Thought so – you haven’t done your homework (bet you were a lousy student at school too) – FYI Mondragon is an area in Spain where a private co-op started in 1956 with specific rules. They have a dedicated website and their system has been copied in, among other places, Germany, France, UK, USA, Canada and Australia – plus a few small co-ops in NZ. It is now renown for fairness and longevity, something that very, very few private corporations are (LLCs generally last less than 5 years & co-ops between 7 & 10 – Mondragon has lasted 70) I suggest James you do a bit of basic research before posting if you want people to take you seriously and not laugh at you. While you might sneer at the EU, I suggest you also check out a couple of facts about them – like which monetary zone invests the most into other areas and zones (be advised the US does not rank first neither does China) and which supra-national group in the space of 24 hours in 1991 foiled an attempted coup in the former USSR. (again NATO was powerless, but not the EU). To use the southern EU states (Spain, Greece & Italy) with weak economic foundations as reasons to scoff at the most powerful economic zone on the planet merely shows up your ignorance. The relevance to the article is that under the present government, NZ seems wedded to the US/UK/Aust economic ideology – a failed system that is both inefficient and wasteful. There are plenty of better systems tried, tested and proven. A fully integrated and appreciated workforce with a fair wage system outperforms profit driven cowboy corporations every time.

      • Skeptic 8.1.2

        If you were to take the 1984 $NZ and cost of living/ wage structure as a base line (when NZ standard of living was on par with Australia) the minimum wage today would be $33/hr, with the average at $45/hr. That is the real measure of how far NZ living standards have fallen since Rogernomics and Ruthenasia.

        • Chris 8.1.2.1

          Basic benefit rates are even further out of whack, and have been even before the cuts in 1991. Benefit rates haven’t reflected the true cost of living since the 1970s. Annual CPI increases have been meaningless ever since because they’re based on a percentage increase of a figure plucked out of the air. Add the further pressure of maintaining a wage/benefit gap in a climate of low wages and all you get is our ever-burgeoning underclass. Well done to all involved.

      • Chris 8.1.3

        Good to see a neo-con accepting that Labour firmly embraces the neo-liberal model, instead of dog whistling accusations of being “far-left” or “socialist”.

      • The Chairman 8.1.4

        “Surely $20 would be enough…”

        Not if inflation also increases, offsetting the fiscal benefit.

        • Tricledrown 8.1.4.1

          Inflation is only happening in housing and
          Interest rates.
          Elsewhere stagflation.

          • The Chairman 8.1.4.1.1

            If the minimum wage were to increase to $20 per hour, the concern is employers will increase prices to maintain margins. Thus, diminishing the expected fiscal benefit such a wage increase would produce.

          • Chris 8.1.4.1.2

            But the cost of living is still increasing. It’s still harder and harder to get by. Isn’t that the point?

      • Tricledrown 8.1.5

        Labour had coalition partners that prevented the Clark govt from putting more effective poverty reducing policies in place.

        • Chris 8.1.5.1

          What policies do you mean? And which coalition partners prevented the Clark government putting them in place?

      • Sabine 8.1.6

        well some 3.5 years ago labour campaigned on a $ 16 wage/per hour.

        While not quite 20$ it would have been way more then National has achieved so far, considering that even with the current increase they still are well below $ 16.

        so how many terms do you think National will need to achieve $ 20?

        http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=11301505

        • UncookedSelachimorpha 8.1.6.1

          “so how many terms do you think National will need to achieve $ 20? ”

          Until inflation makes it worth $14.50 in today’s terms, I am guessing.

          • Wayne 8.1.6.1.1

            Uncooked,

            It seems to me that $15.75 is worth $15.75, so what is the point you are making?

            • Chris 8.1.6.1.1.1

              Perhaps it’s that CPI benefit increases don’t keep up with the real effects of inflation?

        • Wayne 8.1.6.2

          Sabine,

          Well, how about (any political party could pick this up);

          $18 in 2018,
          $19 in 2019,
          $20 in 2020.

          In politics it is best if things are simple and easy to remember (provided there is at least some level of connection with the real world).

          • Sabine 8.1.6.2.1

            so you think that between 2017 and 2018 National would increase the mIn wage by 2.25$?

            you base this on wishful thinking? Or past experience? They have yet to reach 16$.

            • Wayne 8.1.6.2.1.1

              Sabine,

              Probably not. As you point out, too large an initial jump.

              But you never know. No-one predicted the $25 increase in benefit levels.

              • Sabine

                so essentially You just made shit up with nothing to back it up.
                that is so National Party of you.

                However, the Labour party had a policy 3.5 years ago to raise the minimum wage to a higher level then it is today after 3 increases under National.

                ahh, sorry Wayne, Go back to your handlers and get your talking points sorted. You seem very confused by the difference of a ‘benefit’ and ‘ minimum wage’.

              • John up North

                ahhh! yet again the good ol echo chamber BS of the wonderful, caring and ever loving Nat party (under the owesome Key) giving all the poor benes a free hand-out in the form of a $25 upgrade.

                Big time Bull shit! The folks that trot this line out probably also believe we have 10 new bridges in Northland.

  9. Wayne 9

    Skeptic,

    The gap opened up at three points of time.

    The first was the recession of 1987 to 1992. This was very sharp in NZ, but barely touched Australia. The second was 1997 to 1998 with the Asian crisis, which caused a recession in NZ but not in Australia. The third was the early 2000s, when the Aussie economy grew faster than NZ’s.

    The cumulative effect is that Aussie GDP per capita is about 33% larger than NZ. The bulk of that gap occurred in 1987 to 1992, when they had 5 years of growth and we had 5 years of recession. I recall how sharp it was. There was actually less traffic on Auckland’s roads in 1992 than there had been 5 years previously. Unemployment was high, and huge numbers had decamped to Australia.

    Since the GFC, and with the Key govt, the gap has started closing. It is about 5% less than it was in 2008.

    Anyway the gap between Australia and NZ is all very interesting, but a bit irrelevant to the level of the minimum wage as a percentage of average wages. After you can’t legislate that NZ should have the same GDP per capita as Australia. That can only occur in the real economy. Just as it took time to occur, so it will take time to close.

    • Skeptic 9.1

      Essentially correct if a bit simplified on the reasons. Read Dr Shaun Goldfinch’s doctorate dissertation on how the Aust economic review in the 1980s was conducted above board and inclusive to all sectors, while NZ was conducted in secrecy through manipulation and deception by a select few in the Labour Party caucus and in Treasury. I think you’ll reach the same conclusion I did two decades ago – the NZ economic recession was caused directly the two “ACT” governments headed by Lange and Bolger which directly impacted on almost all NZ home grown internal economy, including the wage structure. Overseas factors would have minimal impact if “free market” economics had not been followed. NZ economy was hijacked and we suffered, Aust’s wasn’t and it didn’t. The reasons and data supporting this fact are fully referenced to Cabinet papers in the above dissertation

      • Red 9.1.1

        Not to mention country was bust and had to react to a crisis in contrast to Australia

        • Skeptic 9.1.1.1

          Actually that urban myth perpetuated by neo-cons is long past its use by date. FYI NZ was not bust in 1984 – go study the treasury papers fully, then factor in how large and robust NZ internal economy was. Yes we had significant O/seas debt, but this was mostly private and fluctuated according to currency rates. The only crisis was a manufactured one – a straw man type crisis – a myth started and put out by certain people who over the course of the following decade ripped of the NZ taxpayer big time then got knighted for it. This travesty was documented and exposed in the late 90s. Why are you trying to resurrect it?

  10. Tamati Tautuhi 10

    Obviously housing is not in the Inflation Index as house price inflation in New Zealand is creating an underclass of people here in NZ who can not afford to live in a warm comfortable home.

    The Neoliberal Economic Model has been a disaster, National’s mass immigration policy is causing headaches for everyone.

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  • Anti-fluoridation propaganda now relies on only four studies. 4: Till et al (2020)
    Paul Connet, head of the anti-fluoride propaganda group, Fluoride Action Network, claims that the IQ of children bottle-fed in fluoridated areas drops by 9 points. But he misrepresented the research. There is no observable effect. For earlier articles in this series see: Part 1: Anti-fluoridation propaganda now relies on only ...
    1 day ago
  • The Role of Government
    The Queen’s coronavirus broadcast, with its overtones of Winston Churchill and Vera Lynn, prompted me to reflect on the tribulations my parents’ generation suffered during the Second World War – and I imagine that those parallels, given her own wartime experience, were very much in the Queen’s mind as she ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    1 day ago
  • The irreversible emissions of a permafrost ‘tipping point’
    This is a re-post from Carbon Brief by Dr Christina Schädel Across vast swaths of the northern hemisphere’s higher reaches, frozen ground holds billions of tonnes of carbon.  As global temperatures rise, this “permafrost” land is at increasing risk of thawing out, potentially releasing its long-held carbon into the atmosphere. Abrupt permafrost ...
    1 day ago
  • How to complain about MDC’s unreasonable LGOIMA charging regime
    Back in February, the Marlborough District Council increased the mount it charges for LGOIMA requests. I used the LGOIMA to poke into this, and it seems the case for increased charges is unjustified: the supposed increase in request volumes it rests on is an artefact of the Council suddenly deciding ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 12
    . . April 6: Day 12 of living in lock-down… Another day of a near-empty Park N Ride carpark; . . And another day of near-empty Wellington streets; . . . Light traffic on the motorway. No apparent increase in volume. Commercial vehicles sighted; a gravel-hauling truck; McAuley’s Transport; a ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    2 days ago
  • A Lamentable Failure of Imagination.
    Imagination By-Pass: Had the Communications Minister, Kris Faafoi (above) taken a firm stand with Bauer, reminding them of their obligations to both their staff and the wider New Zealand public, then a much more favourable outcome may well have ensued. He should have made it clear to the Bauer board ...
    2 days ago
  • Simon Bridges can’t connect
    We all know that Simon Bridges has, at the best of times, an intermittent relationship with the truth. However you would think that during a pandemic and economic crisis the current opposition leader would pull his head in and start to do the right thing.Obviously leading by example should be ...
    2 days ago
  • Anti-fluoridation propaganda now relies on only four studies. 3: Riddell et al (2019)
    Connett promotes Riddell et al (2019) as one of the only four studies one needs to read about fluoridation. But he misunderstands and misrepresents the findings of this study. Image credit: Fluoride Action ...
    2 days ago
  • Could the Atlantic Overturning Circulation ‘shut down’?
    This is a re-post from Carbon Brief by Dr. Richard Wood and Dr. Laura Jackson Generally, we think of climate change as a gradual process: the more greenhouse gases that humans emit, the more the climate will change. But are there any “points of no return” that commit us to irreversible ...
    2 days ago
  • The biggest challenge for a generation ahead – covid-19. Defeat and Recovery
    Last month I wrote my blog on covid-19 pointing out the in our pre Alert Level 4 days that a subject no one had heard here months ago was now dominating the media. An amazing feature of this crisis is how quickly it has swept every other issue aside worldwide. ...
    PunditBy Wyatt Creech
    3 days ago
  • Testing for COVID-19 in NZ to Achieve the Elimination Goal
    Nick Wilson,1 Ayesha Verrall,1,2 Len Cook,3 Alistair Gray,3 Amanda Kvalsvig,1 Michael Baker,1 (1epidemiologists, 2infectious disease physician, 3statisticians) In this blog, we raise ideas for how New Zealand might optimise testing to both identify cases in the community as part of the COVID-19 elimination strategy, and to confirm when the virus ...
    SciBlogsBy Public Health Expert
    3 days ago
  • Should we all be wearing face masks to prevent Covid-19 spread?
    Maybe you’ve seen the graph that says those countries where everyone wears a mask are the ones that have managed to keep Covid-19 under control? The first thing to say about that claim is that those countries also did lots of other things, too – they acted fast, with intense ...
    SciBlogsBy Siouxsie Wiles
    3 days ago
  • 2020 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming Digest #14
    Story of the Week... Editorial of the Week... Toon of the Week... Coming Soon on SkS... Climate Feedback Claim Review... SkS Week in Review... Poster of the Week... Story of the Week... North Atlantic's capacity to absorb CO2 overestimated, study suggests Research into ocean’s plankton likely to lead to ...
    3 days ago
  • The Americans are trying to kill us all again
    The Treaty on Open Skies is one of the most effective mechanisms for preventing war curently in force. By letting countries make surveillance flights over each others' territory, it eliminates fears that they are secretly preparing for war. So naturally, the US is planning to withdraw from it: The Trump ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    3 days ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 11
    . . April 5: Day eleven of living in lock-down… My one day of rest for the week, and an opportunity to mow my lawns – which I’d been delaying for about three weeks. (On the plus side, the damp micro-climate in my back yard yielded three lovely fresh mushrooms ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    3 days ago
  • Now we know what the rules are
    As the lockdown has gone on, disquiet about what the rules were and the police's enforcement of them has grown. On Friday, Police admitted that they were abusing routine traffic stops to effectively set up illegal checkpoints, and on Saturday Stuff revealed internal police advice saying that they actually needed ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    3 days ago
  • Anti-fluoridation propaganda now relies on only four studies. 2: Green et al (2019)
    Paul Connett is putting all his eggs in one basket. He says “you only have to read four studies” to find community after fluoridation harmful. Image credit: Fluoride Action Network newsletter. For part 1 of this series see Anti-fluoridation propaganda now relies on only four studies. 1: Bashash et al (2018). Paul Connett, ...
    3 days ago
  • Hard News: Splore Listening Lounge 2020: the road to a “yes” vote
    As far as anyone can say, New Zeaand still has a general election scheduled for September 19 this year. The election will be accompanied by two referenda, one of which will ask voters:Do you support the proposed Cannabis Legalisation and Control Bill?The official campaign period for the cannabis referendum begins ...
    3 days ago
  • Obituary for The New Zealand Listener (1939-2020)
    The vast majority of tributes to the Listener hearken back to its glory days, with little reflection on the magazine as it was at its end.I wrote for it, for half the Listener’s life; I have known personally all the editors except the first (mythical) three. From 1978 to 2014 ...
    PunditBy Brian Easton
    3 days ago
  • Universal income – a challenge to capitalism or a crutch?
    As the world economy slides rapidly towards deep recession there are growing calls for a Universal Benefit coming from some leftists and rightists. Now Finance Minister Grant Robertson is saying it is on the table.  This article by a French party Workers Struggle provides analysis of various forms of universal ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    4 days ago
  • Anti-fluoridation propaganda now relies on only four studies. 1: Bashash et al (2018)
    This is the advice from the very top of the anti-fluoride movement – Paul Connett, director of the Fluoride Action Network (FAN). Don’t worry about reading  up on all the scientific information “You only have ...
    4 days ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 10
    . . April 4: Day 10 of living in lock-down… I wake up to a fine Saturday morning which normally would be like an early Christmas. But it’s Day 10 of Level 4 Lock Down. What  will my fellow New Zealanders be doing on a day like this – staying ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    4 days ago
  • Redline reaching out to more writers & readers
    Some time during the night we went over the 850,000 views mark. We might have had our millionth view by the end of this year – certainly by early next year. Most of the people involved in Redline spent years and years producing various small left-wing papers and selling them ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    4 days ago
  • Keir Starmer elected
    Comfortably, in the very first round, with an impressive 56% of the votes.I wonder, did members of the Shadow Cabinet start tweeting their resignations during Starmer's victory speech, or is that only a trick the right pull?It is odd how all the talk of how the next leader "needs to ...
    4 days ago
  • Hard News: Michael Baker and the Big House
    One of the key voices in this extraordinary time in which we live is that of University of Otago epidemiologist Professor Michael Baker. Philip Matthews did an an excellent job this weekend of capturing the way he became the man for this moment in a profile for The Press.But one ...
    4 days ago
  • New Zealand Gives up on Trying to Save Daylight
    New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern addressed the nation today about the decline in daylight New Zealand has been experiencing over the previous few months. She said “As many of you will notice, our attempts to stem the dwindling of the daylight over the last few months have been completely ...
    Can of wormsBy Can of Worms, Opened
    5 days ago
  • A bulletin from Greece
    Redline received this article from the KOE a Marxist party in Greece Our friends in the KOE describe here the mounting crisis in Greece and tensions on the Turkish border. As desperate people flee from their homelands which have been ruined after decades of imperialist wars and interventions the people ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    5 days ago
  • And God spake all these words, saying
    As the first week of Level Four lockdown unfolded, mounting questions grew as to just what was (and was not) allowed under its “rules”. Partly these were driven by some apparently contradictory messages from different authority figures and explanations carried in the media. Partly they reflected a somewhat sketchy legal basis ...
    PunditBy Andrew Geddis
    5 days ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 9
    . . April 3: Day 9 of living in lock-down… Another late-start to my work day. Everything is temporarily upended as clients are shuffled around so we can minimise our “bubble” by reducing the number of people we help. One of my colleagues has been removed from his clients; his ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    5 days ago
  • Death to our lockdown enemies!
    We must root out the traitors among us! ...
    Imperator FishBy Scott Yorke
    6 days ago
  • Climate Change: The benefits of electrification
    In order to meet our 2050 carbon target and do our bit to avoid making the Earth uninhabitable, New Zealand needs to decarbonise our economy, replacing fossil fuels with electricity in the energy, industrial and transport sectors. The good news is that it will mean cheaper power for all of ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 8 (sanitised version)
    For those folk who find my other Lock-Down Diary versions too “negative” or otherwise unpalatable… Here’s a photo of a pretty flower, .   . Better? Tomorrow’s Sanitised Version: a cute animal video. . . . =fs= ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    6 days ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 8
    . . April 2: Day eight of living in lock-down… Today, my work day starts late. Our rosters and clients have been dramatically changed, lessening (theoretically) the number of people in our work “bubble”.  If just one of us catches covid19 the impact could be considerable as Grey Base Hospital ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    6 days ago
  • A note on apartments and bubbles
    As Aotearoa enters week two of lockdown, it’s clear we’re all still working out what our “bubbles” look like and how to stay in them to stop the spread of Covid-19. New to the government’s Covid-19 website is some good guidance for people living in apartment blocks. Recent decades have ...
    SciBlogsBy Siouxsie Wiles
    6 days ago
  • Getting in futures shape 
    “There are decades where nothing happens; and there are weeks where decades happen.” Lenin Don’t we all know that feeling now.

    Prospect Magazine alerted me to this particularly apt quote. It is a much more evocative quote than Hemingway’s “gradually then suddenly” which is also doing ...

    SciBlogsBy Robert Hickson
    6 days ago
  • Maybe axing Clark would be unfair. But what about any of this is fair?
    Yesterday was the day the consequences of the lockdown suddenly got very real for many. Firms have been closing and laying people off since the outset of the quarantine but this has mostly been happening out of the public eye. The mass closure of a number of iconic New Zealand ...
    PunditBy Liam Hehir
    6 days ago
  • Might a ‘Coasean’ social contract mitigate overall societal harm from COVID-19?
    Brian Williamson1, Prof Nick Wilson2 (1Economic consultant, UK; 2University of Otago Wellington) In this blog, we outline how a win-win social contract could be forged to address the major dimensions of response to the COVID-19 pandemic when using a mitigation strategy: the particular need to protect older people from high ...
    SciBlogsBy Public Health Expert
    6 days ago
  • Returning To “Normalcy”.
    Resuming Normal Service: The Republican Party's nominee for in 1920, Warren Harding, promised the American people: “not heroics, but healing; not nostrums, but normalcy; not revolution, but restoration”. If she wishes to remain our prime minister, then Jacinda Ardern will offer New Zealanders the same.HOW EDUCATED AMERICA snickered when the ...
    6 days ago
  • New Zealand’s Government Must Save New Zealand’s Media.
    No Free Society Without A Free And Functioning News Media: If we are to surrender our civil rights to the broader cause of defeating Covid-19, then foreign corporations must, likewise, surrender their right to inflict immense economic and cultural harm on New Zealanders simply because it improves their bottom line.I’M ...
    6 days ago
  • Corona fevers and the madness of models
    by Daphna Whitmore A third of the world is under lockdown and a clear assessment of this measure to curb the spread of COVID-19 is urgently needed.  With any high-stakes decisions it has to be asked what are we dealing with here? Are the measures warranted? Will they achieve their ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    7 days ago
  • Lockdown day 8
    I haven’t done a huge amount in the last few days. I’m reading The Poppy War and I’ve sort of poked at a couple of games – I started SOMA but I’m a wimp and I quit while in the first room after the brain scan. I might try it ...
    The little pakehaBy chrismiller
    7 days ago
  • Backstage and Theatre
    The swan politicians may be gliding on the water, occasionally snapping at one another. Meanwhile, as the Covid19 crisis illustrates, the officials are desperately paddling below providing the real locomotion. One of the most fatuous recent grandstanding comments (of about a week ago), adding to the public’s anxieties, was ...
    PunditBy Brian Easton
    7 days ago
  • Legal Beagle: Waiver, the singular Crown and the conduct of Crown legal business
    Much has been written about the importance of discretion in an emergency situation, and the concerns raised by the potential for it to be exercised arbitrarily. Given the quality of the discussion, there seemed little point in adding to it at any length. In particular, I point to the evidence ...
    7 days ago
  • Highlights from Bauer Media’s science-related reporting
    Today has felt surreal. I was all set to touch base online with my science communication students when a colleague shared the news that Bauer Media would be shutting down its publications immediately. The first link I saw implied it was Woman’s Weekly affected, and even that shocked me. But ...
    SciBlogsBy Sarah-Jane O'Connor
    1 week ago
  • Outsiders.
    Bogeymen, Real And Imagined: Is the number of psychopathic and sociopathic individuals in any given society truly as vanishingly small as we like to tell ourselves? Isn’t it more likely that the mass-shooters and serial-killers filling the headlines represent only the tip of a much, much larger iceberg of frightfulness? ...
    1 week ago
  • We have a right to know the rules we are expected to obey
    Outgoing Police Commissioner Mike Bush appeared before the Epidemic Response Committee today, who asked him for the rules police are using to enforce the lockdown. He refused:Police Commissioner Mike Bush has admitted the advice given to Kiwis about what they're able to do during the lockdown hasn't been clear enough. ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 7 (sanitised version)
    For those folk who find my other Lock-Down Diary versions too “negative” or otherwise unpalatable… Here’s a photo of my cat, . . Better? Tomorrow’s Sanitised Version: a pretty flower. . . . =fs= ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    1 week ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 7
    . . April 1: Day seven of living in lock-down… This morning I had a brief chat with one of my neighbours, “D” (social distance between us, a good three or four metres). I learned he had resigned from his previous job and had been hired by another company – ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    1 week ago
  • RIP The Listener, New Zealand’s pioneering voice
    Funnily enough, my thought as I start this post is whether it will be well written enough. Or should that be well enough written? Because so much of what I know about good writing came from my two stints at The Listener, which this morning was shut down due to ...
    PunditBy Tim Watkin
    1 week ago
  • OK, Britney: stop sniping at National for doing its job
    With normal democratic procedures in abeyance, there were two ways to go. First, it was open for the government to dissolve itself and invite the National Party to join a ministry of national salvation. That would have lessened the democratic deficit of the times by having a team of rivals without ...
    PunditBy Liam Hehir
    1 week ago
  • Helpful tips for parents during lockdown
    Dr Kirsty Ross Children and young people can respond differently in times of distress. This also varies by age and developmental stage, with younger children having more magical and imaginative thinking, and older children having more awareness and knowledge of the issues our communities are facing (which brings up ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    1 week ago
  • Skeptical Science New Research for Week #13, 2020
    1 week ago
  • Hungary is now a dictatorship
    Hungary has been a virtual dictatorship for a decade now, as Prime Minister Viktor Orbán has gradually eroded its democracy. But now, its official, with the passage of an indefinite emergency law allowing rule by decree:Hungary’s parliament has passed a new set of coronavirus measures that includes jail terms for ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • A new Ministry of Works
    While the economy is on pause under lockdown, the government is beginning to plan how to cope with the post-lockdown, post-tourism, post-export education world we will eventually find ourselves in. They're planning a lot of infrastructure spending as economic stimulus, and have asked for proposals which can start the moment ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Capture: Well spaced out
    It's my distraction,  setting up tiny scenes to photograph.  I've got stuck on the Babushka dolls for now.  Something about their bubble shape.  Something about their never changing, smiling features, suggesting persistent equanimity.  Can we get through everything that is being thrown at us and keep at least a tiny ...
    1 week ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 6
    . . March 31: Day six of living in lock-down… This time I managed to sleep a little longer and the alarm woke me at the pre-set time: 6.55am. Then remembered I was working a later shift and could’ve slept in. Oh well, there are things to do at home. ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    1 week ago
  • March ’20 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
    Image credit: Diamond Harbour School Blogs I notice a few regulars no longer allow public access to the site counters. This may happen accidentally when the blog format is altered. If your blog is unexpectedly missing or ...
    1 week ago
  • 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
  • Alarming decrease in calves increases fears for endangered Hector’s dolphin
    This has been a terrible summer for Hector’s dolphins. The first indication was very low numbers of dolphin sightings during late spring and early summer. The Otago University Marine Mammal Research Team has carried out routine dolphin surveys at Banks Peninsula for more than 30 years. In all that time, ...
    SciBlogsBy Otago Marine Science
    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
    33 mins 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
    1 hour 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
    4 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
    6 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
    7 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
    9 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
    1 day 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
    2 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
    2 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
    2 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
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    7 days ago
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  • New Zealand defence personnel conclude mission at Taji
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  • State of National Emergency extended
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