As if any more evidence was needed that National’s Paula Bennett is completely out of her depth as Minister of Social Development, it appears Work and Income is turning away the hungry while Paula can’t even get her lines straight:
Despite a high court ruling in 2002 instructing WINZ to tell beneficiaries what their entitlements are (Ruka v WINZ), they’ve decided to return to the bad old days of the 1990s when they would tell hungry Kiwis to bugger off and find a food bank to avoid paying them out their lawful entitlements and generally do whatever it took to stop people getting the help they were legally entitled to. Including creating and running on policy that was in breach of the law.
The reason Paula Bennett doesn’t appear to have a clue is because she was never meant to. She’s just that nice centrist-looking lady who smiles on the TV while National’s out the back ripping the guts out of our welfare system.
This is an area Labour failed miserably in during their last time in government. Let’s hope they can get their act together now.
Update: Surprise, surprise, it appears National’s election promise to lift the allowable income for beneficiaries won’t be funded in this year’s Budget and there’s no commitment as to when it will be.