web analytics

National’s benefit sanctions – the wolf is not your grandma

Written By: - Date published: 9:30 am, December 2nd, 2017 - 78 comments
Categories: benefits, welfare - Tags: , , , , ,

The tories seem to have found a new angle on the government’s removal of benefit sanctions that punish the children of beneficiaries who don’t name both parents.

Now Louise Upston is saying National opposes the change because it’s not fair on children who will lose their right to a family connection.

I think this is what some people call compassionate conservatism – and what everyone else calls absolute bollocks.

The idea that you can be a noble guardian of children’s whakapapa by taking food out of their mouths is as absurd as it is disingenuous.

We all know (because they made little secret of it) that, when in government, National pandered to beneficiary bashers and set the welfare system up to be as stingy as possible – penny pinching by taking money away from those who need it most while doing nothing to rein in the vastly more damaging behaviour of the likes of property speculators and tax dodgers.

But at least they were a little bit more upfront then, often spinning this sort of stuff as the ‘tough’ punitive measure it was. Now it seems in opposition the wolf is attempting to dress back up as grandma again.

Here’s a helpful suggestion for them though – if they really care (or at least want to more convincingly look like they care) about children’s sense of identity and/or deadbeat dads who don’t contribute – both of which are legitimate issues – they should address those by proposing incentives rather than sanctions.

One option could be to try some sort of amnesty – wave penalties and maybe offer a discount on ongoing child support payments if you come forward within a certain timeframe – that’s if the welfare of the child really is more important than the money.

Then there is no danger of punishing victims of rape and domestic violence who need protection and currently have to go through a re-victimising process to avoid losing much needed money from already meagre benefits.

Let’s see some creative, truly compassionate, private members bills in the ballot from Louise Upston.

Or is this just the grandstanding it looks like?

78 comments on “National’s benefit sanctions – the wolf is not your grandma ”

  1. Sabine 1

    Labour needs to set a ‘benefit for children’. Single stay at home mothers/fathers get a benefit for her/himself and a separate benefit for the child/children. The benefit of the child is calculated upon the income of the parent, and is given in the name of the child and can not be sanctioned irrespective of the doings of the parents (IF the parents are drug users or other wise mentally unable the benefit of the child can be paid to a nominated carer). Irrespective if the father or mother are named, are involved with the child care, are still living in the country or in the worst case scenario that the father of the child is the ‘father, uncle, brother, cuzz, or friend of dad’ to the mother.

    It can’t be that hard.

    National, still living in the 15 century. Bigotry above welfare, National!

    • red-blooded 1.1

      Sorry, Sabine, but that sounds:
      a) REALLY complicated,
      b) inequitable, and
      c) impractical.

      When you say the benefit for the child depends on the parent’s income, but the single parent is also being paid a benefit (meaning that that’s their income) that seems to be a bit of a loop. Besides, why should children whose parents get a higher benefit (maybe because they need accommodation support because they live in Auckland or Queenstown) need more money than those who live elsewhere? Food and clothing and other necessities for kids are no more expensive (in fact they may well be cheaper).

      And let’s remember that even if there were separate payments for kids, it would still be the parent managing the money. Parents who faced difficult circumstances, or were poor managers, would still have access to the kids’ money.

      I understand your point about kids who are living away from their parents, but I’m pretty sure there’s already a system for making payments to nominated caregivers, and of course the Independent Youth Allowance for people over (I think) 15 who go through a legal process to “divorce” their parents.

      It’s great to see the government moving away from the punitive approach. I really hope there’s a bigger work programme being developed for the welfare sector.

      • tracey 1.1.1

        No harder than the development of the current formula

        • red-blooded 1.1.1.1

          I don’t see how this comment addresses any of the issues raised above.

          When it comes right down to it, the parents would (in almost all cases) still be managing the money. So, what would be achieved?

          And let’s remember that a lot of the spending that impacts on a child’s quality of life can’t be separated out from spending the parent does on their own behalf: rent, power, food choices (it’s not like the child is going to have their own catering service)…

          The number of children should definitely be factored into any benefit paid to a parent/caregiver, and it is. I’m not saying the current amount or formula can’t be improved (I know it can be), but the approach Sabine is suggesting isn’t practical or equitable.

      • Sabine 1.1.2

        The parents benefit depends on their income. i.e. stay at home mum. or part time worker, or full time worker. Depending on that the benefit for the adult is calculated.

        the benefit of the child is set by the government and is a fixed amount paid. i.e. first child 0 – 5 years – 120$ per week, 6 – 12 years 150 $ per week, 12 – 18 120$ per week plus what ever they earn should they have a part time job. (i just pulled these numbers out of the sky – some parents may chime in and give their two cents)

        this benefit of the child is not dependent on the income of the parent, however i can agree to a means test of a high income threshold.

        Ahh, but i get it, its in the too hard basket, cause someone would actually have to think about something and word it, and debate it and such and such and its just easier to do nuthing, wring our hands, throw ashes on our heads and wail. Sure.

  2. greywarshark 2

    We all know (because they made little secret of it) that, when in government, National pandered to beneficiary bashers and set the welfare system up to be as stingy as possible – penny pinching by taking money away from those who need it most while doing nothing to rein in the vastly more damaging behaviour of the likes of property speculators and tax dodgers….

    Here’s a helpful suggestion for them though – if they really care (or at least want to more convincingly look like they care) about children’s sense of identity and/or deadbeat dads who don’t contribute – both of which are legitimate issues – they should address those by proposing incentives rather than sanctions.

    The deadbeat dads who don’t contribute [any sense of restraint on behaviour, morality, kindness, interest and positive socialisation]….legitimate issues….are going to result in ‘the vastly more damaging behaviour [than] the likes of property speculators and tax dodgers.

    The domestic violence that is so rampant in NZ is largely inflamed, I believe, by women being forced to name and interact with men who are just shocking role models for the children in the man’s own habits, and they provide awful role models to the children of how men treat women when they are annoyed or upset which may be a large part of the time.

    Forget about the money, people can find a way to improve themselves if they don’t live in fear of threats and violence. But get a man who wants his home benefits and doesn’t want to be a provider of anything, just a taker, and he will bleed the household dry and on the rare occasions he seems helpful and amenable his motives would be questioned. It is anti-social behaviour and unhealthy for family life and personality development, and affects the mother’s ability to provide stable proper parenting.

    Another thing is that naming the father can result in lies that men unfairly named naturally resent. When money is tight, a woman can think back as to who she was involved with at time of conception and pick the man who now appears to be the best, and she will be tempted to pin the child on him. At one time before DNA tests it was hard to reach certainty about this. This naming law creates a situation that comes under the heading of moral hazard. It should be up to the mother, and she should be advised that if she doesn’t legally declare it, it would be wise to keep a note of the likely fathers in case future connections may be sought.

    • Et Tu Brute 2.1

      But now we have DNA testing, with a high degree of accuracy, can men still complain they’re unfairly named?

      • Zorb6 2.1.1

        My understanding is that the woman involved can reject any call for DNA,whether the alleged father or anyone else wants it done or not.

        • Et Tu Brute 2.1.1.1

          Well that’s silly. Natural justice should allow a claim to be test, especially since it is both a social and financial claim (ie. the father will have to pay the mother money).

          • Zorb6 2.1.1.1.1

            Silly or not,thats the law.

            • Tracey 2.1.1.1.1.1

              To avoid arguments can you post a link to the Law cos first you said you thought it was the law and then you said it is the law?

              • Zorb6

                Yes,it is the law as far as I know.If you don’t think it is,you can show why it is not.

                • tracey

                  You are the one saying it is, so you post proof of your certainty? Why make me prove a negative?

                  • Zorb6

                    My understanding is that you have a law background.If that is indeed the case it will be a simple exercise for you.

                    • tracey

                      I am not the one making the claim zorb6. You are. Post the link or withdraw the statement, that is what happens to right wingers who make claims without support? I have no idea why you are being so defensive about this, just post a link to the law.

                    • One Anonymous Bloke

                      Just admit it, you have no clue what the law says.

        • Tracey 2.1.1.2

          I have never met a mother who refused dna testing the father was happy to do. The reverse, yes. Many times.

          Perhaps National can share their record on getting non paying parents to pay up before they endorse adding more to a list that isnt addressed.

        • mickysavage 2.1.1.3

          My understanding is that the woman involved can reject any call for DNA,whether the alleged father or anyone else wants it done or not.

          No one can be compelled to give a DNA sample in a paternity proceeding but the court can draw an adverse inference from the failure to do so.

          • Zorb6 2.1.1.3.1

            Thanks for clearing that up for Tracey.

            • tracey 2.1.1.3.1.1

              Zorb6, maybe you can answer my question below this as you have quite a lot of knowledge of this area?

              • Zorb6

                Not sure why you think your time is wasted learning something today,that you never knew previously.

                • One Anonymous Bloke

                  All we “know” now is that for practical purposes, the law is unclear. Yes, you’re “free” to refuse to provide a sample and the court will hold that against you.

                  You might as well say you’re “free” to steal on that basis.

          • tracey 2.1.1.3.2

            Mickey, what percentage of paternity proceedings do you reckon are men trying to get their paternity declared rather than women wanting a father proven? Genuine question. Would be interesting to see if the rates of men using the process to get themselves declared the legal Dad have risen in recent years.

    • Chris 2.2

      “It should be up to the mother, and she should be advised that if she doesn’t legally declare it, it would be wise to keep a note of the likely fathers in case future connections may be sought.”

      Not any more. This government’s promised to repeal the section that penalises sole parents who don’t name the other parent, and about bloody time, too. So all this talk of what sole parents should or shouldn’t do is completely moot.

  3. Et Tu Brute 3

    It is a tough one. No one wants to disadvantage children. But what measures do you take when parents don’y follow expectations? Article 7 of the Convention on the Rights of the Child says children have “the right to know … his or her parents.” Pretty simple. Does anyone disagree?

    Now how we do that without disadvantaging the children? If the mother names the father, the father has to pay child support. If the mother doesn’t name the father, the burden falls on the taxpayer. So it is a social good, and an ethical good under the Convention, for both mother and father to be named on birth certificate.

    But how do you achieve that without hurting the children? I don’t have an easy answer. Maybe part is in looking at how child support is assessed. Maybe another is to have strict rules, but a non-financial disincentive.

    It’s really tough, as we fought for years overseas to get my stepson’s father’s name removed from the birth certificate. It never worked. But I’m sensitive as well to the many reasons why one may wish to keep it off.

    • Tracey 3.1

      Um, a child can know who their father is without him being named in a WINZ declaration. Upston seems to be leaving out the suggestion that to avoid naming for DV a mother had to explain why she didnt have a protection order etc etc

    • One Anonymous Bloke 3.2

      expectations

      Meanwhile, on Earth, Article 19 of the UDoHR says: Everyone has the right to freedom of opinion and expression.

      Your “expectations” are in breach of international law and New Zealand’s duty to uphold same.

      So I suggest you take your expectations and shove them.

  4. Zorb6 4

    Waiving penalties and offering discounts,penalises those fathers contributing as already required.

    • tracey 4.1

      Can you explain that further cos I dont quite follow what you mean?

      Hopefully doing the right thi g by their offspring is more important than a lost opportunity to play the system?

      • Zorb6 4.1.1

        If father A is paying his share of child support as per existing law,he may be quite justifiably aggrieved if father B who is not,recieves waivers and incentives.Can you understand that or is it too complex?

        • tracey 4.1.1.1

          Why will he be aggrieved and why is he comparing his obligation to care for his offspring with someone who doesnt? Or do fathers operate on a ” if others dont have to pay to care for their progeny I wont either”, basis? I would hate to rate fathers as poorly as you seem to.

          • Zorb6 4.1.1.1.1

            I believe its called ‘human nature’.How you rate that is your own personal opinion.

            • tracey 4.1.1.1.1.1

              Thanks for clearing up that you based that view on how you would behave.

              • Zorb6

                If you payed tax,but your neighbour didn’t and was caught out,and had a portion of their tax waived,I take it you would be ,just fine with that.

                • One Anonymous Bloke

                  Happens all the time in business bankruptcy cases.

                  Keep whinging that they stole your precious.

                  • Zorb6

                    These are personal responsibilities.A big difference.

                    • red-blooded

                      How’s it different? Some businesses pay their taxes, others declare bankruptcy and then set up again under a different name. The owner(s) are cleared of responsibility for the debts they created, including their tax debts. It’s a way of avoiding paying tax, which is a responsibility of all citizens, residents and businesses.

                    • One Anonymous Bloke

                      I interpret that vague inarticulate crap to mean that you’ve swallowed the gobshite about personal responsibility.

                      More fool you.

                    • Zorb6

                      I must say ,you are a rather hostile ‘pet’ troll.

                    • One Anonymous Bloke

                      Tell you what, rather than shooting the messenger, why don’t you have a second attempt at making the point R/L and I responded to.

                    • Zorb6

                      To state the obvious ,while Corporations may have the legal rights of persons,this topic concerns benefit sanctions.Liable parent contributions require a liable parent,and we have established that a woman can name an individual as the father and that will suffice.As far as DNA and how a judge would look on a test not being available to establish paternity(responsibility)goes,there could be a number of mitigating circumstances..i.e each case is different and any assumptions you have made are not guaranteed.Comparing liable parents with company bankruptcies are an apples and oranges argument,as I suspect you know,full well.

                    • One Anonymous Bloke

                      Also, individuals (eg: sole traders) can go bankrupt, and when they do, the IRD often writes off large amounts of tax. So your example doesn’t invalidate the comparison.

                      However, that isn’t a breach of anyone’s human rights, whereas discriminating against people who refuse to name the other parent of their child(ren), is.

                    • Zorb6

                      @OAB.I told you what the topic is.Stick to it.

                    • One Anonymous Bloke

                      I know what the topic is: you’re flailing around and lashing out at people because you think someone stole your precious.

                      You attempted to make your point with an example about taxation, hence my point about tax write-offs.

                      If hypothetical Father A feels “aggrieved”, I suggest he stop being such a curtain-twitching judgemental cry-baby, and get over the fact that he isn’t his brother’s keeper.

                      But in reality your purported cry-baby is a projection of you, eh.

                    • Zorb6

                      @OAB.I attempted to elaborate on human nature to a particularly thick respondent.You are trying to divert and twist the discussion.An all too common feature of any dialogue you enter.You suffer from low self esteem imo.

                    • One Anonymous Bloke

                      “elaborate on human nature”

                      Yes, that’s what we’re discussing: specifically, I’m testing your opinion of what human nature is like against observable reality.

                      So I ask again, other than advise him to stop being such a cry-baby, what can we do for your hypothetical curtain twitcher?

                      You’re not suggesting that we enact legislation to pander to his vile vengeance fantasies, are you?

                    • boggis the cat

                      Paying your tax in full is also a personal responsibility. Presumably you are opposed to the various methods that the wealthy use to avoid paying their full tax liability.

        • UncookedSelachimorpha 4.1.1.2

          The weird thing is to then go punish mother and kids, for the failings of father B…

          And why would father A worry so much about it? Hopefully he is worried about doing the right thing himself, and also pleased to see kids of father B given good care and opportunities, even if father B is useless.

          • One Anonymous Bloke 4.1.1.2.1

            What’s weird about it?

            The National Party requires that people judge and hate one another. Otherwise they’d never get elected.

  5. mickysavage 5

    Well said Enzo. Especially this bit:

    “The idea that you can be a noble guardian of children’s whakapapa by taking food out of their mouths is as absurd as it is disingenuous.”

    • Sabine 5.1

      So what is Labour going to do then to fix it. And fix it once and for all? Cause if they only tweak a bit here and there, the next time National gets in, and they will – such is the world – they will tweak it right back.

      What is Labour going to propose to assure that children whose parents are on a benefit do not suffer unduly if a parent gets sanctioned. I mean we can all agree that children are not responsible for the parents they never got to choose?

      • tracey 5.1.1

        I doubt there is anything that can be done to stop Nats changing it back next time BUT Labour did not make much impact on Richardsons machete when they returned in 99… so until the band of voters both big parties chase on this change their view of those on beneficiaries…?

        • One Anonymous Bloke 5.1.1.1

          Entrenching the BoRA would go a long way towards ensuring that the National Party human rights abusers could be dealt to appropriately.

          • Matthew Whitehead 5.1.1.1.1

            Entrenching BoRA doesn’t actually do anything, FYI, because there is no requirement that Parliament pass bills consistent with BoRA. What needs to be done is that BoRA needs some reasonable exceptions and framework added to it, and then the whole thing needs to be made sovereign over Parliament, so that the courts can strike down laws that violate human rights.

            It does risk politicising the judiciary, but it seems to be the only reasonable way to ensure politicians actually follow the rules.

            • solkta 5.1.1.1.1.1

              Yes, the current situation is ridiculous. You can take your local school board to court if they breach the Act but not the government.

            • One Anonymous Bloke 5.1.1.1.1.2

              Any entrenched legislation requires a 75% majority to change, so it would do something.

              However, I meant what you described: an effective repeal of Section 4.

              • Matthew Whitehead

                Well, yes, it would “do something,” but not regarding the problem you were talking about, which I figured was reasonable context to assume. 😉

                Entrenching the BoRA after making it sovereign over Parliament might be useful, though. The reason I say it will “do nothing” at the moment is because National are perfectly content to have BoRA in legislation so long as their laws don’t have to be consistent with it, so there is no real danger of it ever being repealed atm.

                • One Anonymous Bloke

                  It does however provide a very specific and easily explained wedge to drive between the National Party and the electorate.

                  Few people realise that their human rights are forfeit when they walk through those doors at WINZ. Increased casualisation means that affects more and more voters.

                  It’s the NZLP that needs convincing.

        • weka 5.1.1.2

          Change the culture. This is whey McFlock’s incremental change view is flawed over the long term. We need to address immediate poverty reduction in whatever way we can, but we also need to change how NZ relates to its own poverty and punishment ethos. If we don’t, then it’s just going to come back the other way again, probably worse because we’ll be closer to disruptive CC and people will be retrenching into conversation positions out of fear. We’ve got a window currently.

          • One Anonymous Bloke 5.1.1.2.1

            Entrenching the BoRA would put pressure on the culture to change. Otherwise we’ll just end up waiting for all the bigots to die.

            It would be nice to think we could “change” endemic prejudice. In the meantime its victims should not go unprotected.

            • weka 5.1.1.2.1.1

              Chicken and egg, and I think entrenching the BoRA needs cultural change alongside (and prior) otherwise you just get more division and a bigger chunk of resentment than is necessary or workable.

              Of course the culture that would have to change first, to enable wider cultural change and entrenching BoRa is Labour’s.

              • One Anonymous Bloke

                “Entrench the BoRA” is a pretty succinct way to answer the question: “what do you want?”

                People are generally unaware that if they are made redundant and need to claim their entitlements, they automatically give up certain human rights.

                So when you say “change the culture”, I have a very particular goal in mind.

        • cleangreen 5.1.1.3

          100% tracey bang on there exactly.

          “Labour did not make much impact on Richardsons machete when they returned in 99”

          It was their last term that they made some inroads so this time are they planning their changes to take affect in six years time or more?

          Then to save themselves from a forthcoming hostile electorate, they need to revert to use a change to the reserve bank act to print money for “essential services” as our trading partners did or face the electorate ready to eject them, (God forbid)?

        • Sabine 5.1.1.4

          We can’t change the past.
          We can however change the future.

          So really, as i said before, i don’t much care about what was done under such and such as this is something that is done. I do care however what Labour is going to do to change this odious part of our Welfare State in the future.
          I also don’t expect National to not be National, full of shit, bigoted and cruel. I do however expect something from our current government. So my question stands, what is Labour/NZFirst/Green going to do to keep the children of this country save from over zealous WINZ drones that have a ‘sanctions’ quote to upheld in order to meet their KPIs.

          • tracey 5.1.1.4.1

            What do you want them to do? I cannot see Labour or NZF doing more than edge tinkering.

            The past informs the present and foretells the future.

            I see no significant cultural shift coming in the next 3 years.

  6. eco Maori 6

    I think the welfare system is stuffed up we should encourage GOOD 2 parent family’s
    as in my view the stats will show that children of 2 parent are more successful than 1 parent family’s so I say reward good 2 parent family’s and we will reap the benefits of this idea which is a logical-idea and it is not rocket science. I do believe that the men who father a child should help pay for the child’s care this teachers the men to be responsible or there actions the problem is that the wealthy have Impunity and this teaches people not to stand up and take ownership of there actions 1 CTV building 2 john key and speargun 3 bill english and his accommodation fraud 4 historic cases of children being abused while in state care .There is many more examples of the wealthy having impunity around our world as well . This is the 21st century one can not hide anything with our 21 century communication device so a massage to the wealthy you should start practicing what you preach enough said. Ana to kai

    • greywarshark 6.1

      Do you get into Promise Keeper territory eco Maori? I agree it is best to have two parents working in harmony usually, single parents I think are more likely to come from a family that hasn’t found balance in its term. However all parents should be helped, and parenting raised as a desirable learning subject. Making fathers pay for their children is putting money before the important task of providing good role models and being there for the children and other parent when needed.

      It would be far better not to take money from them and get them to go to parenting classes and learn how to encourage, teach kids, control themselves, think about what they want the kids to learn from them. Then interactions are likely to be to everyone’s benefit. There are males who get into a toxic hate against the mother and kill the children and themselves to destroy her. Cut out the money and introduce the adult in the male to what being a responsible parent is, that is more important than taking a mere moralistic and commercial attitude.

  7. bwaghorn 7

    the fucking woman upston said nuffin when as minister of woman key assaulted a young lady , shes a fake hag , nuff said

    • tracey 7.1

      Not quite true… on International womens day she started a speech by declaring she is not a feminist !

  8. Chris 8

    Don’t forget, Ezno, the nasty things Labour did to welfare when in government, and again when in opposition, too, voting with the nats’ 2014 welfare “reforms”. Quite unbelievable, I know, but true. We need to make sure Labour doesn’t do it again.

  9. Bondy 9

    It appears a Govt Minister is going to introduce more Benefit Sanctions (they’ll be called something else so as not to upset the junior partner PM) How does everyone feel about this?

    • One Anonymous Bloke 9.1

      It appears as though you think a single Minister doesn’t have to seek Cabinet approval, even though said Minister actually stated as much in his remarks.

      Do you always struggle with English comprehension, or have you just given up your critical faculties in exchange for a position in the parrot chorous?

      It isn’t even his portfolio. Please try and think for yourself for a change.

    • Chris 9.2

      If you’re talking about what Jones said this morning then you’re wrong. Jones himself said that the work would pay the minimum wage so, while still crap, hardly “work for the dole”. The media has taken this “work for the dole” description way too far. If anything eventuates it’ll be more like Taskforce Green or PEP. And there won’t be sanctions – government has signaled getting rid of the worst of these. It’ll simply be “take a suitable job or lose the dole” – pretty much what being eligible for the dole’s always been about.

  10. Bondy 10

    “If you’re in receipt of a benefit and not willing to change your lifestyle and get into work, then expect sanctions to be put on you.”
    Seems to conflict with the promises made to gain support from another Party (that has Labour over a barrel) to allow beneficiaries a free reign to choose that lifestyle. Spin it how you want.

    • joe90 10.1

      Where can I find these – promises made to gain support from another Party […] to allow beneficiaries a free reign to choose that lifestyle – that you speak of?.

  11. Michelle 11

    What a load of bull from the tories who have incarcerated record numbers of fathers and mothers under there regime and they didn’t give a stuff about all the children they left without parents. I find many of the tory women to be heartless bitches.

Recent Comments

Recent Posts

  • Govt keeps AM on the air in Northland
    Minister of Broadcasting and Media Willie Jackson and Minister for Emergency Management Kieran McAnulty today announced a $1.48 million package to fund the repair and replacement of three transmission masts in Northland to ensure AM radio can stay on air in the region. “This funding will secure the reinstatement of ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    9 hours ago
  • Multi million dollar package to tackle retail crime and reoffending
    A multi million dollar package to tackle retail crime and reoffending is the most significant crime prevention financial package in recent memory  New fog cannon subsidy scheme set up. Government to provide $4000 for all small shops and dairies in New Zealand who want a fog cannon installed, with shops ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    10 hours ago
  • Funding boost to support NZ’s game development industry
    New Zealand’s game developers will receive an immediate funding boost to help support the growth of local studios beyond the current Dunedin centre. “New Zealand’s game development sector has been rapidly growing. The latest data from the New Zealand Game Developers Association shows the total revenue for the industry is ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    13 hours ago
  • A new strategy for Pacific housing
    New and existing housing initiatives are being brought together to improve home ownership for Pacific people said Minister for Pacific Peoples, Aupito William Sio. Fale mo Aiga: Pacific Housing Strategy and Action Plan 2030, launched today, is the Government’s targeted response to the housing challenges faced by Pacific Aotearoa. Minister ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    14 hours ago
  • Government takes action on pay parity for healthcare workers
    Thousands of frontline community health workers – including nurses in aged-care facilities - are in for a pay rise as the Labour Government takes action on pay parity in the health sector. “I’m pleased to announce that Cabinet has agreed to on-going funding of $200 million a year so that ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    20 hours ago
  • World’s first algae-based local anaesthetic another step closer to reality
    A partnership between the Government and the Cawthron Institute has delivered a breakthrough in the production of a potent microalgal ingredient for the world’s first algae-based pain medication, Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor announced.  “Scientists at Cawthron Institute in Nelson have developed a reliable and commercially scalable method for producing neosaxitoxin, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Ngāti Mutunga o Wharekauri and the Crown sign Agreement in Principle| Ka waitohu a Ngāti Mutunga o...
    Ngāti Mutunga o Wharekauri and the Crown have signed an Agreement in Principle marking a significant milestone towards the settlement of their historical Treaty of Waitangi claims. Ngāti Mutunga are based on Wharekauri/Chatham Islands and are the second of two iwi/imi to reach agreement with the Crown. “Today’s signing follows ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Further ACC reforms introduced to Parliament
    New reporting requirements on access to ACC Earlier access to minimum rate of compensation Refinement to ACC purpose to focus on supporting all eligible injured people to access ACC The Accident Compensation (Access Reporting and Other Matters) Amendment Bill which aims to improve access to ACC for all injured people, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Government supports Chatham Islands' resilience
    The Government is supporting the Chatham Islands’ resilience to extreme weather events and natural hazards through a grant to secure safe drinking water, Minister for Emergency Management Kieran McAnulty said. “Many households in the Chatham Islands lack easy access to drinking water and have been forced to get water to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • New Chief Coroner appointed
    Coroner Anna Tutton has been appointed as the new Chief Coroner, Attorney-General David Parker announced today. Anna Tutton was appointed as a Coroner in January 2015, based in Christchurch, and as Deputy Chief Coroner in 2020.  After the previous Chief Coroner, Judge Deborah Marshall, retired Ms Tutton took on the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • DIRA Amendment Bill passes third reading
    The Government has passed an Amendment Bill today to support Fonterra’s move to a new capital structure and the continued success of New Zealand’s dairy industry. The Dairy Industry Restructuring (Fonterra Capital Restructuring) Amendment Bill will allow the Fonterra co-operative to make changes to its capital structure, as well as ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Minister Whaitiri to attend Food Ministers’ Meeting with Australian counterparts
    Minister for Food Safety Meka Whaitiri will attend the Fourth Australia and New Zealand Food Ministers’ Meeting in Melbourne on Friday. It will be the first time the meeting has been held in person since the Covid-19 pandemic disrupted international travel. “The Food Ministers’ Meeting sets the policy direction for ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • New Kiwibank parent appoints directors
    David McLean and Sir Brian Roche have been appointed as the first two directors of the newly incorporated Kiwi Group Capital Limited (KCG), the parent company of Kiwibank. In August, the Government acquired 100 percent of Kiwi Group Holdings, which also operates New Zealand Home Loans, from NZ Post, ACC ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Defence Ministers meet in Cambodia
    Minister of Defence Peeni Henare attended the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) Defence Ministers’ Meeting-Plus (ADMM-Plus) in Siem Reap, Cambodia. “The first face to face meeting of the ADMM-Plus members is an opportunity for me to highlight New Zealand’s position on key regional security matters,” Peeni Henare said.  “In ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Pay equity extended to thousands more social workers
    The Government will extend pay equity to all community and iwi organisations who employ social workers and receive funding from the Crown, Minister for Women Jan Tinetti announced today. We expect this will improve the lives of approximately 4,600 social workers. “This extension means thousands more social workers will be ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Taskforce set up to protect construction industry from product shortages & delays
    New ‘Critical Materials Taskforce’ will trouble shoot building materials shortages Focus on maximising productivity & cushioning businesses from supply chain risks Successful ‘Plasterboard Taskforce’ reshaped to include broader sector knowledge and expertise Will provide guidance, data and information to support builders, designers and business owners A new Critical Materials Taskforce ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Bigger ED, more theatres and more beds in new Whangārei Hospital
    A new emergency department with three times more space will be part of the first stage of a two-stage project to build a new hospital for Whangārei and Northland. The Government has today confirmed funding for stage one of the new hospital – an acute services building and a child-health ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Finnish PM to visit New Zealand
    Finland’s Prime Minister Sanna Marin, accompanied by Minister for Development Cooperation and Foreign Trade Ville Skinnari and a business delegation will visit New Zealand next week, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern announced today. The two leaders will meet in Auckland. “New Zealand and Finland are natural partners. We share similar approaches ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • New recreational rules to support hāpuku and bass fisheries
    The daily limits on recreationally caught hāpuku (also known as groper) and bass will be lowered to a total of two per person in some areas, with a new accumulation limit of three per person on multi-day trips. Oceans and Fisheries Minister, David Parker said the rule changes would take ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Jobs for Nature enabling Mātāuranga Māori
    Mātāuranga Māori is at the heart of the latest tranche of Jobs for Nature projects set to promote biodiversity and reduce impacts of climate change on Māori land, Minister of Conservation Poto Williams says. Project work will include the creation of an ecological corridor in Tairāwhiti, protecting 60 hectares of ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Supporting resilient shipping infrastructure in Vanuatu
    The Government has announced further support to Vanuatu to assist in constructing climate-resilient wharves as part of the Vanuatu Inter-Island Shipping Support Project (VISSP). “Aotearoa New Zealand is committed to supporting the economic recovery of our Pacific region in a way that continues to provide growth and supports climate resilience,” ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Government welcomes High Court ruling on climate case
    The High Court has today confirmed the legality of the advice provided by the Climate Change Commission (the Commision) to inform New Zealand’s nationally determined contribution (NDC) and the first three emissions budgets.  Minister of Climate Change James Shaw says New Zealanders can have confidence in the Commission and of ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Government introduces changes to mining Act with stronger environmental focus
    ·         Crown Minerals Act will no longer actively “promote” prospecting, exploration, and mining of Crown-owned minerals ·         Will create more certainty around engagement between industry, iwi and hapū. The Government is proposing changes to modernise the Crown Minerals Act 1991 (CMA) to support more environmentally conscious management of resources, says ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Speech to Building Nations 2050 conference
    Tēnā koutou, tēnā koutou katoa. Good morning and thank you, Jack, for the introduction. I’d like to take a moment to acknowledge Infrastructure New Zealand Chair, Margaret Devlin and all the sponsors and organisers of this event for bringing us together in ‘Building Nations 2050’. I would also like to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Better natural hazard information for home buyers
    Associate Minister of Local Government Kieran McAnulty has today introduced legislation to empower councils to share better information about natural hazards with the public. The Local Government Official Information Amendment (LGOIMA) Bill will make it easier for Councils to share clear and concise information in Land Information Memorandum (LIM) reports. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • New Zealand welcomes visiting WTO Director General
    The World Trade Organization (WTO) Director General Dr Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala visits New Zealand this week. Minister for Trade and Export Growth Damien O’Connor said the WTO was essential to New Zealand as a small export-dependent trading nation.  “New Zealand’s economic security depends on our ability to trade. Our goods exports ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Faster, cheaper, better resource management law given first reading
    New laws that will deliver a faster, cheaper, and better resource management system had their first reading in the House today. The Spatial Planning (SP) and the Natural and Built Environment (NBE) Bills, which were introduced last week, will replace the 30-year-old Resource Management Act (RMA). Environment Minister David Parker ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Minister Sio to meet new Vanuatu PM
    Associate Foreign Affairs Minister Aupito William Sio travels to Vanuatu today, to meet with the new Government led by Prime Minister Alatoi Ishmael Kalsakau and to represent Aotearoa New Zealand at the Pacific Community (SPC) Ministerial Conference being hosted in Port Vila. Minister Sio will have a number of bilateral meetings with ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Driving ahead with the Clean Car Standard
    Following discussions with vehicle importers, the Government has confirmed the Clean Car Standard will be phased in from 1 December 2022, significantly reducing the CO2 emissions of light vehicles in New Zealand, announced Transport Minister Michael Wood. “Emissions from our light vehicle fleet are the single largest source of ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Speech to Constitutional Kōrero conference
    Our Evolving Sense of Nationhood – Me Anga Whakamua Indigenous Futures and New Zealand’s Constitution Tuia ki runga, Tuia ki raro, Tuia te here tangata, Mai i te wheiao ki te ao mārama Ka rongo te pō ka rongo te āo! Tīhei Mauri Ora! Kei ngā miro o te ao ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Rental sector changes to regulate residential property managers, clear up meth confusion and ease pr...
    A suite of measures to improve the lives of renters and landlords has been announced by Housing Minister Dr Megan Woods as the Government makes more progress on reform of the rental sector. “Nearly 600,000 households rent in New Zealand and these measures will result in regulated oversight of residential ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Further sanctions on the political and economic elites of Russia and Belarus
    Foreign Affairs Minister Nanaia Mahuta today announced further sanctions on members of the inner circles of governments in Russia and Belarus, as part of the ongoing response to the war in Ukraine. “Aotearoa New Zealand first moved against the powerful and wealthy in Russia with sanctions on political and economic ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Another step towards improved supermarket competition
    The Bill to trigger an unprecedented shake-up of the grocery sector and deliver New Zealanders a fairer deal at the checkout and help tackle cost of living pressures is ready for its first reading at Parliament. “The duopoly has now been given plenty of warning. If they fail to adequately ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Black Ferns to be celebrated at Parliament
    A public event and celebration will be held on Parliament’s lawn on December 13 to celebrate our Rugby World Cup winning Black Ferns. “The Black Ferns’ triumph at Eden Park is one of New Zealand’s greatest sporting moments,” Grant Robertson said. “They are extraordinary athletes, exceptional people and proud New ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Autism Guideline released by Ministry
    The release of the latest edition of the Aotearoa New Zealand Autism Guideline – He Waka Huia Takiwātanga Rau has been welcomed by Minister for Disability Issues Poto Williams today. The Guideline provides an opportunity to better understand and communicate best practices for supporting autistic people and their families and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Speech to Aotearoa Refugee Hui
    Nga mihi nui ki a koutou, Welcome to the Parliament, your Parliament. It is great to see the community here in such numbers, and I am happy to be here with my parliamentary colleagues to listen and take part in the discussions today. I particularly want to acknowledge Ibrahim Omer ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Global climate talks underline need for domestic action
    Minister of Climate Change James Shaw marked the end of COP27 negotiations in Egypt by saying it was now crunch time for counties to step up and take urgent action at home. “Even though we have these international negotiations every year, our focus must always be on what we do ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Defence Minister visits Ukraine and Poland
    Defence Minister Peeni Henare has visited Ukraine and Poland, holding talks with his Ministerial counterparts. During the talks Minister Henare reaffirmed New Zealand’s unwavering support for the Ukrainian defence against Russia’s illegal and unprovoked invasion.   The visit  was a further demonstration of New Zealand’s ongoing support to the people ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Stuart Nash to attend OECD meetings
    Small Business Minister Stuart Nash will travel to Paris today to attend small business meetings with the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD). Stuart Nash will chair the OECD’s Digital for SMEs (D4SME) Steering Group meeting and the 4th Roundtable of the OECD D4SME Global Initiative. “The OECD’s Digital ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Human Rights Act enhanced to protect religious communities
    The Government will amend the law to make sure religious communities feel safe and welcome in New Zealand. After extensive consultation, with more than 19,000 submissions on six proposals, the Government will make one change to address incitement towards religious communities while asking for further work to be done alongside ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago