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Poverty Watch 4

Written By: - Date published: 9:32 am, September 22nd, 2012 - 7 comments
Categories: national, poverty - Tags:

Welcome to Poverty watch, a weekly update on the National government’s lack of response to the urgent and growing issue of poverty in NZ. A lot of background issues and links are set out in Poverty Watch one two and three.

In related news this week, Labour MP Jacinda Ardern’s new Child Poverty Bill was put in to the ballot:

Poverty eradication focus of Labour bill

The bill will set a definition of poverty, establish methods to measure it and goals to reduce the number of children living in poverty. … The bill also requires the Minister of Finance to include a child poverty reduction statement in the Government’s annual budget policy statement, and will establish a child poverty reduction board of the heads of relevant Government departments.

A University of Otago study found:

Otago study reveals ‘hard to ignore’ child poverty

A “difficult to ignore” proportion of New Zealand children have lived in persistently low income households in the past decade, research shows.

University of Otago researchers today released data showing that 16 per cent of a sample of almost 5000 children experienced persistent low income from 2002 to 2009.

…Researcher Fiona Imlach Gunasekara said Maori and Pacific Island children were much more likely to experience persistent low income, with 23 per cent of Maori children and 29 per cent of Pacific Island children falling into the category.

Maori and Pacific children more likely to live in poverty? I wonder if that could possibly be related to poorer educational outcomes? Thank goodness we have expensive and damaging national standards to tell us what we already know. But I digress – back to the Otago study:

…Dr Gunasekara said exposure to many years of poverty or deprivation in childhood increased the risk of poor child development and health. “These children are also more likely to grow up to be adults with worse health outcomes and lower socioeconomic status.” She said this level of child poverty was difficult to ignore.

Ohh I think you’ll find that the government is doing just fine in that respect.

“We also need ongoing monitoring of the levels of persistent child poverty, so we can tell if what we are doing is making a difference, which could be done through the establishment of a Children’s Act and targets for reducing poverty, as the EAG (Expert Advisory Group on solutions to child poverty) have suggested.”

The Nats believe in ongoing monitoring and modeling of social welfare spending, but not of child poverty. Their priorities are clear, and reducing poverty is not on the list.

Finally this week, look out for news of Live Below the Line, a campaign to highlight poverty issues by living on $2.25 per day. Several Labour MPs will be participating.

Poverty Watch always ends with the following list, the National government’s response to rising poverty in NZ:

• National has not yet set any target for reducing poverty
• ?


7 comments on “Poverty Watch 4”

  1. Jokerman 1

    in addition to economic poverty, the emphasis upon “work unit” employment of both, or single parents of children sees a poverty of parenting by primary caregivers and an imposition of greater domestic labour upon older household children.

    Furthermore, contrary to propaganda studies espousing the emotional benign-ness of E.C.E, high levels of social stimulation may not be for every child; hyper-vigilance, especially within our dominant
    competitive and bullying culture.

    wikiped “Schizoid Personality Disorder” and consider its reduction relationship to anomie

    furthermore, understanding SPD personally, it is essentially adaptive self-reliance, unlike narcissism, which i understand as other-reliance

    however. in the same way that personality may be variable across contexts, it may vary across time..

  2. Grace Roberts 2

    I wonder how much poverty the Section 71 (c) deduction for failing to take reasonable steps to name the other parent is contributing, and if this is in fact why Maori and Pacific Island children feature so predominantly?

    Deducting $28/week for each child drives people below the breadline.

  3. Draco T Bastard 3

    Finally this week, look out for news of Live Below the Line, a campaign to highlight poverty issues by living on $2.25 per day.

    Just to be clear, that’s $2.25 per day on food – nothing else. For 5 days that’ll get a couple of kilograms of vegetables but no meat. At the end of the 5 days whoever is doing this will be very hungry.

  4. Dr Terry 4

    Labour (or Greens?) should not be seeking to “reduce” child poverty. The only honorable aim is to “eliminate” child poverty.

  5. xtasy 5

    Sadly NZ as a “system” of political dominance by those claiming a “cultural”, “legal” and “economic” heritage from the “Crown”, the UK and the “motherland” has become an arrogant farce of a system.

    Traditionally the truly “3rd world” treated migrants from various countries have simply been “used” and “abused” for the purpose of delivering “cheap” labour, “willing” voters for whichever party in government allowed their migration, they have also been abused to serve as an at times unfair “exccuse” to say, we are so “fair” and “humane”.

    If your colour is “brown”, you “know your place”, so to say, whether it is in sports, employment, education or else.

    But now, this must and will have an end. The hypocrisy of the anglo saxon dominance is coming to an end. Only in politics and top economics do the representatives of that “class” still cling to their privileges.

    It is time to challenge this for good, to make an end to the arrogant, hypocritical, dishonest and corrupt system of exploiting workers and non-workers, to divide a society simply to keep a dominant elite system in place, that has lost all credit, especially since the global financial crisis hit.

    So stand up, people, do not take any more crap, take this system on, day by day, face to face, and demand your legal rights to be counted, heard, respected, and to hold the government responsible for NOT doing what they were voted in to do.

    Poverty in a country that belongs to the leading agricultural producers on the globe, where milk, fruit, meat , fish and so get exported for great profits (usually the top quality too) while children here starve, and while workers cannot survive a decent livelihood, that is a bloody crime!

    I know less well off countries caring more!

  6. Dr Terry 6

    “I know less well off countries caring more”. Caring more? You think this country’s Government CARES AT ALL?
    I would like to know the answer to what this Government WAS elected to do?

    • fatty 6.1

      This government was elected in 2008 to end the mythical ‘nanny state’…as stupid as that is. They were reelected in 2011 to do something, but I’m not sure what…sell the assets? NZ voters are a pain in the arse to live with

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