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We used to be better at this

Written By: - Date published: 11:48 am, March 19th, 2012 - 68 comments
Categories: benefits, jobs - Tags:

Danyl at Dimpost had a good post the other day about benefit numbers and showing that they go up in relation to hard economic times – not because people these days are a bunch of lazy solo parents who just need a kick up the arse. If you look back even further than he did, you see that unemployment is a result of ideological political choices.

Here are the long-run numbers on the dole and DPB from MSD’s Statistical Report:

As Danyl points out, there’s no ‘crisis’ in DPB numbers that justify the Nats’ obsession with going after solo mums. There has been an increase during the recession but, even so, the numbers are significantly below the trend of the past 25 years.

The DPB was introduced in 1974 mainly to give women and their children some measure of financial independence if they had to leave an abusive relationship or the relationship broke down for other reasons. It took time for that be fully realised – every battered woman in the country didn’t leave her husband as soon as the DPB became available. But since the mid-80s DPB numbers have been between 2% and 3% of the population.

There is some link with unemployment numbers with the correlation suggesting that the ‘zero unemployment’ level of DPB take-up would be about 1.5% of the population – above that is due to economic factors. In today’s numbers – full employment would bring about 48,000 people off the DPB.

The dole numbers, when compared to unemployment numbers, suggest you would get zero people on the dole with the unemployment rate still at about 2.5% – presumably the rest would be people in short-term gaps between jobs that wouldn’t have time to get the dole or people who are otherwise ineligible. The 0.87 correlation between dole numbers and the unemployment rate tells you it’s not ‘bludging’ but lack of jobs that’s the problem

And it wasn’t always this way. Look at the start of the graph. 0.1% of the population on the dole – and that was up on a decade before! The huge rise in dole numbers is clearly linked to the ideological moves of neoliberals who decided it was better to have an army of unemployed people on the dole – creating competition for scarce jobs to drive down wages.

The Right would respond that, before that, tens of thousands were employed in ‘do nothing’ jobs by state departments that acted as employer of last resort. Well, when the alternative is paying out $11,000 a year for the dole, losing another $8,000 in tax take, depressing wages, and the numerous social consequences of endemic unemployment in communities, employing less than 2% of the population in jobs that might not be strictly economic viable in their own right seems like a fair deal overall.

When you consider the total costs and benefits, having the government shell out some coin to create jobs for 60,000 people that wouldn’t happen on a purely commercial basis seems like a social and fiscal winner. We used to do it, after all. But do any of our parties have the imagination for that these days, or have they all drunk the neoliberal kool-aid so much that they think having tens of thousands of people on the dole is unavoidable, even natural?

68 comments on “We used to be better at this”

  1. tsmithfield 1

    “Danyl at Dimpost had a good post the other day about benefit numbers and showing that they go up in relation to hard economic times – not because people these days are a bunch of lazy solo parents who just need a kick up the arse.”

    So, since unemployment numbers went up much more during the period from 1987 to 1993, and given that the current recession is much tougher than it was during the period from 1987-1993, is it fair to say that National has been handling the much tougher conditions far better than might have been expected.

    • McFlock 1.1

      Better than might have been expected from Roger Douglas and Ruth Richardson implementing a massive reorienting of the economy, indeed. The National Standards approach to government evaluation – set the benchmark low enough and you’re guaranteed to “achieve”.

       

    • “So, since unemployment numbers went up much more during the period from 1987 to 1993, and given that the current recession is much tougher than it was during the period from 1987-1993, is it fair to say that National has been handling the much tougher conditions far better than might have been expected.”

      Sure.

      They gave away billions in tax cuts and then borrowed $380 million a week to make up for the shortfall.

      If Labour had done that, TS, you’d be somewhat displeased at such irresponsible profligacy. But it’s ok when National does it.

      By the way, unemployment in the early 1990s was over 10% – contrasted to the 7% in the last couple of years.

      • aerobubble 1.2.1

        And they won’t borrow but instead want to sell high returning assets in a energy constricted future.

    • Rob 1.3

      and its trending down so we are on the right path.

      • aerobubble 1.3.1

        High global commodity prices will continue to keep the dip feed of do-nothing parliaments of both left and right. Labour CGT will only bring us up to international average. To go beyond we need to build culture of give a damn. As opposed to the can’t give damn that housing is so shate, earth quake prone, deregulation kills people, etc, etc.

  2. The actual cause of unemployment is not ‘ideology’ but falling profits due to an inherent tendency within capitalism to stagnate. http://critiqueofcrisistheory.wordpress.com/2012/03/18/the-failure-of-capitalist-production-by-andrew-kliman-part-2/
    The ‘ideology’ comes in when the unemployed are blamed for unemployment, most viciously when solo mothers are targeted as welfare cheats having babies to avoid work when raising children is the most demanding job there is.
    The economic purpose of NACTs welfare reform is to force 30,000 beneficiaries onto the queue of unemployed driving down wages to create more cheap jobs. This is the NACTs job creation scheme.
    Of course that’s why the NACTs adopted WWF, because that too is nothing but the subsidising of a cheap labour economy that pays unlivable wages paid to a growing sector of the labour force.
    NZs current role in the global division of labour is to produce cheap commodities, including labour, for the large imperialist corporates. Time for decolonisation.
    http://redrave.blogspot.co.nz/2012/02/nz-time-for-decolonisation.html

    • Tiger Mountain 2.1

      The tendency for the “rate of profit to fall” has long been controversial. The ratio of constant to variable (usually ascribed to labour) capital is a sliding measure. There are numerous dense writings about this. And it gets rather complicated in these times of free lancers in nerdy glasses thinking that they are their own boss, and SMEs rather than huge industrial settings. The thing is the total macro effect of the current means of production and the inflow and outflow of capital.

      Dave is correct that our political rulers are really comprador capitalists, not that he expresses it in that way. Workers of the world unite!

  3. felix 3

    “Well, when the alternative is paying out $11,000 a year for the dole, losing another $8,000 in tax take, depressing wages, and the numerous social consequences of endemic unemployment in communities, employing less than 2% of the population in jobs that might not be strictly economic viable in their own right seems like a fair deal overall.”

    Why are you assuming that depressing wages and breaking down communities are negatives in the equation?

  4. Gosman 4

    Interesting that DPB numbers aren’t that responsive to the wider health of the economy from the looks of that graph. I fact they have been within the 2 to 3 percent band for the past two decades.

    • felix 4.1

      Yeah, bugger all innit?

    • To a degree, Gosman.

      Though like the example of my partner’s cousin; she came home early one day to find her hubby, suitcases in hand; leaving the house. He was walking out on her; their three children; and was shacking up with his co-worker.

      That left the poor woman distraught; three children to care for (youngest 18 months); the oldest child angry and resentful; and she’s had to go on the DPB. They are upper middle class I guess.

      Meanwhile, ex-hubby is now living with blonde co-worker and enjoying himself.

      Funny thing… some in society demonise solo-mums, and yet they’re the ones left holding the baby (literally). Solo dads or absent fathers never get this kind of grief from society. (No criticism of solo-fathers – it’s hardly their fault.)

      I also blogged about another friend of ours (a solo-mum) who has done all the right things; http://fmacskasy.wordpress.com/2012/03/06/once-upon-a-time-there-was-a-solo-mum/

      Unfortunately, Bennet canned the TIA which has helped so many women get off the benefit and into employment. (The same benefit that Bennett used to put herself through university and buy a house.)

      • Gosman 4.2.1

        I don’t think too many people demonise women simply for being on the DPB (certainly not in the mainstream). It is more their actions while on the DPB that they might get criticised for such as having additional children while on the benefit.

        It is obviously harder for absent father’s to be targetted in the way you suggest as they don’t tend to self identify themselves and even if they acknowledge they are absent father’s they might have valid reasons for this. Perhaps it was their wife that left them and took the kids with her and won’t let the man see the kids.

        • felix 4.2.1.1

          “I don’t think too many people demonise women simply for being on the DPB (certainly not in the mainstream).”

          Nah just in parliament, in nationwide radio commentary, in opinion pieces in the major newspapers and all over the internet every day. Definitely not in the imaginary mainstream though.

          • Gosman 4.2.1.1.1

            So where is the evidence that someone is demonised purely for being on the DPB as opposed to their actions while on the benefit? You stated this happens in Parliament so do you have a link to a copy of Hansard where an MP is doing this?

            • felix 4.2.1.1.1.1

              Careful Gosman, you’re opening a can of worms.

              I could link you to any number of nuanced statements from Bennett and Key who have said women choose the DPB as a lifestyle many times in many different ways.

              But if I start insisting on links to evidence of every idea that seeps out of your filthy hole you’re going to have a very hard time diverting threads from now on.

              • Gosman

                I don’t mind providing evidence for my claims when asked. For example my claim about the relative unemployment rates of countries with left and right wing economic policies. I am more than happy to contrast places like the US and Sweden or New Zealand and Finland. In fact I have provided a number of links in the past that have done something very similar including an article from the Economist whoich highlights major issues with Sweden’s unemployment rate.

                • felix

                  So what? You’re asking for evidence of a perception which is quite another matter.

                  But if that’s the road you want to go down, I’m ready. Let’s play.

                  • Gosman

                    Go for it then. Provide examples where Paula Bennett denigrates people on the DPB purely for being on the DPB.

                    • felix

                      No thanks, I think I’ll jump directly to demanding evidence for everything you say, as agreed.

        • Vicky32 4.2.1.2

          Perhaps it was their wife that left them and took the kids with her and won’t let the man see the kids.

          My heart bleeds! 😀 If a woman does that, you can guarantee there’s a good reason, inasmuch as a woman is not legally allowed to not let the man see the kids – unless she can prove he’s a danger to them.
          (I well remember my friend in Welly, trying desperately to get her daughters to go and visit their father without creating a huge fuss every time. They didn’t want to see Daddy, but J., wasn’t legally allowed to let them off going)

      • Kotahi Tane Huna 4.2.2

        @Frank – Bludger Bennett scored a house? Perhaps that’s why RWNJs are so convinced that beneficiaries are all ripping off the system – it’s what they would do.

    • Blighty 4.3

      Interesting how Righties tend to miss things:

      “There is some link with unemployment numbers with the correlation suggesting that the ‘zero unemployment’ level of DPB take-up would be about 1.5% of the population – above that is due to economic factors. In today’s numbers – full employment would bring about 48,000 people off the DPB.”

  5. ChrisH 5

    Imagine if 60,000 people were employed to fit insulation in homes and make our cities more beautiful. Just saying.

    • King Kong 5.1

      You are onto it Chris H. Its called work for the dole.

      Just over the road from my house in Thorndon is Anderson Park and the Rose Gardens which was constructed under a similar scheme and is a great success.

      • No, not work-for-the-dole.

        Let’s try something more imaginative; bolder; and more dignified; let’s try REAL jobs for REAL pay.

        Wouldn’t that be better?

        • Gosman 5.1.1.1

          What’s a ‘Real’ job Frank?

          You could employ almost everybody who is unemployed as policy analysts for the civil service. Would that be a ‘Real’ job?

          • Frank Macskasy 5.1.1.1.1

            That is an inane question to ask.

            • Gosman 5.1.1.1.1.1

              No it’s not. It goes to the heart of the divide between left and right. The fact that you are seemingly unaware of this speaks volumes of your understanding of the other side of the debate.

              • Yep in Helen Clark’s time there were thousands of low quality jobs created such as teachers jobs and nurses jobs …

              • framu

                sorry gosman

                your silly style of discussion goes nowhere near the heart of the divide between left and right

                • Gosman

                  Care to expand on that or should we all just take you at your word?

                  The right believes you can only have social spending when you have a productive economy to support it.

                  The left believes that having a decent level of social spending will encourage the productive sector.

                  You disagree with this accessment then please tell me what is wrong with it.

                  Please note I am not meaning whether you think the arguments put forward by either side are correct or not. Just focus on the fundamental differences between the arguments.

                  • felix

                    Actually the left believes that people in a civilised society have a right to a decent job to provide for themselves and their families.

                    The right don’t believe there is such a thing as society.

                    • Gosman

                      The left pays lip service to this idea about everyone has a ‘right’ to a decent, (whatever that actually means), job. When you look at the reality around the world left leaning Governments tend to only resolve this problem in the short to medium term by increasing the size of the state sector at the expense of the private. Over time the Unemployment rate is similar or higher to those from right leaning countries.

                    • felix

                      So what? Did I claim to speak for left-leaning governments? Please argue with what I said, not with your own imagination.

                      Interesting that you don’t know what the word “decent” means in this context. How about “dignity”, any clues about that?

                      Or do those concepts not factor into your model easily enough?

                    • Gosman

                      I never stated you did. I’m merely pointing out that it is easy to say you stand for something that you deem to have value. If the results of your actions though is nothing better than someone who you believe doesn’t place the same value on that same thing then who is failing?

                    • felix

                      “I never stated you did.”

                      You didn’t need to, you responded to my assertion about a belief held by “the left” with some waffle about “left-leaning govts” so either you’re accusing me of speaking for them or you’re changing the subject and pretending you’re not.

                      “who is failing?”

                      You and your model. You can’t quantify decency and dignity so you deny their relevance.

                      Ultimate fail. Humanity fail.

                  • framu

                    thats all good and well – but…

                    “You could employ almost everybody who is unemployed as policy analysts for the civil service. Would that be a ‘Real’ job?”

                    …. is on the same level as “well lets make the minimum wage $100 per hour”

                    when you typed it you were (hopefully) just being a bit cute, not actually discussing the heart of the divide between left and right.

                    Im pretty certain im not the only one who notices that some comment threads get filled with inane distractions and absurd arguments from yourself

                    • Gosman

                      I wasn’t the one who brought ‘Real’ jobs into this discussion. All I want is for the term to be qualified exactly what it means. The reason I took it to extremes was to highlight the problem with just using it in an argument. It is meaningless without further detail.

                    • framu

                      ” The reason I took it to extremes was to highlight the problem with just using it in an argument.”

                      bollocks IMO – its just part of the little game you like to play here and on other blogs

                  • Foreign Waka

                    Gosman, reading through your posts is like reading “the Piano” as brutal and last century as the book. The future will hold even more challenges when the automation really takes hold. Robots can actually do most of ANY job these days. So what are we going to do in the next 20 or so years? Today’s School leavers will be not only affected by the logistic of arguments but also by forsight of what kind of society we want to be.

                    • Gosman

                      ‘Robots can actually do most of ANY job these days’

                      Really???

                      Take I.T. as an example. What evidence is there that Robots can do most of the job around application development?

                      Are these self financing Robots as well? Do they go out and create their own capital required to start the business and then go out and distribute their own products to themselves without any human interaction?

                    • Draco T Bastard

                      Take I.T. as an example.

                      Why? Oh, that’s right, because it’s something that can’t, yet, be done by machine.

                      How about we take something a little more basic like, McDs. McDs is basically a production line for burgers and, as such, everything done to produce their burgers could be done by machine up to and including taking and giving out the orders.

                  • eljaydee

                    Gosman, The right’s concept of social spending is to outsource it to a friendly corporation whereas the left prefers to provide it directly to the reciptients.

              • felix

                Gosman,

                The left/right divide is best highlighted here by the fact that you think your suggestion that hiring thousands of unemployed workers to insulate homes is comparable to hiring thousands of unemployed workers as policy analysts is a serious matter for discussion.

                • Gosman

                  I think it is a pretty fair comparision. What happened in Australia when they spent all that money on a similar insulation scheme?

                  • felix

                    Those two sentences are unrelated.

                    • Gosman

                      Just employing someone to do a job isn’t necessarily a good thing felix. That is the relationship.

                    • felix

                      And that one is unrelated to the first two.

                      Are you set to random today? You’re not even up to your usual dribbling standard.

                  • Tiger Mountain

                    Your desiccated text Gozzie is like a repeating loop from an existential screenplay written by an Algerian torturer.

                    Proscribing poverty for others is rarely the work of someone on the minimum wage .

      • lprent 5.1.2

        Problem is that work for the dole requires a much greater investment than simply paying the dole. Shovels, tools, and supervision. Historically the central National government has been keen to have work for the dole. However they don’t cough up the required cash to actually create sustainable work for the dole schemes.

        And whenever it has happened in the past it invariably winds up as simply reducing the amount of real work because typically local government and community groups get pressured into covering the government’s arse. But the schemes seldom last.

        Stupid policy generally.

    • muzza 5.2

      Imagine if the governments of this country over the past 40 years were doing what was best for NZ and its people!

      Nah fcuk them, and the country, we will do what we are told from offshore, bit by bit we will have them all sticking pins in eachother..they will not even try to look for the real problems, we will simply divert their attention is gadgets and toys, while disenfrachising them from democratic process through corrupting of government!

    • Lanthanide 5.3

      Yes, imagine how many houses would burn down from improperly installed insulation by unskilled (and uncaring) people pulled off the street as a make-work activity, as has happened in Australia.

      • Rob 5.3.1

        I would stop using the Aus insulation case study as it has turned out to be a disaster. There has been lots of call backs due to incomplete and sub standard work, a multitude of businesses set up quickly to take advantage of the scheme have fallen over and gone to ground giving consumers and local govt a real issue to fixing up poor quality installation.

        Dont get me wrong here, the idea of insulating houses is vary valid. Just the execution of this particular programme in Aus has been a horror show and will continue to be for a long time.

        • Lanthanide 5.3.1.1

          That’s why I’m referencing it.

          It’s all very well saying “lets give home insulation jobs to all those on benefits!” but when push comes to shove, actually installing insulation does require some level of skill and competence, otherwise it is a disaster.

          It’s like after the February quake there were a few people on here saying we should get beneficiaries to lay drains in CHCH because it’s as easy as just picking up a shovel or some such tripe. I argued strenuously against this and was eventually backed up by several drain-layers who completely agreed that it simply isn’t work that beneficiaries with little to no training can do.

          • felix 5.3.1.1.1

            Why is everyone assuming that we have to put people in jobs they haven’t been trained for?

            Surely we train them first, no?

  6. Jimmie 6

    A silly question to ask – if the DPB was introduced solely to allow battered women to leave an abusive relationship why don’t they make it a requirement to get the DPB for the batterer to have been prosecuted and convicted in relation to the assault.

    That way only the really desperate and needy women folk would get the DPB and anyone who decided that popping kids out was a great career choice may decide differently.

    Especially as now with the pill etc. having a baby is more of a choice than an inevitable outcome of a night of passion. If there are single mums who cannot find work then put them on the dole.

    I mean what happened to all the single mums before 1974? Ya can’t tell me there were tens of thousands of women getting beaten up all around NZ – the trouble is ya make something freely available and may folks will take you up on the offer – Physiotherapy anyone?

    • Vicky32 6.1

      A silly question to ask – if the DPB was introduced solely to allow battered women to leave an abusive relationship why don’t they make it a requirement to get the DPB for the batterer to have been prosecuted and convicted in relation to the assault.

      Yes, it is a bloody silly question, based on a depth of ignorance that’s truly appalling. When I was first on the DPB in the late 1970s, I had to produce proof of legal separation from the man who battered me. Waiting for the man to be prosecuted and convicted would mean asking the woman and her child(ren) to starve for a year or 18 months.

      That way only the really desperate and needy women folk would get the DPB and anyone who decided that popping kids out was a great career choice may decide differently.

      Ah, the old breeding for a benefit meme. Are you so stupid that you believe that happens?

      Especially as now with the pill etc. having a baby is more of a choice than an inevitable outcome of a night of passion. If there are single mums who cannot find work then put them on the dole.

      More hate-filled ignorance. Women on the DPB are women who were previously in a relationship – whether they were single (de-facto) or married. IMO, women who have single ‘nights of passion’ are not women who become single mothers.

      I mean what happened to all the single mums before 1974?

      Their children were (sometimes forcibly) adopted out. Some lucky few were, with the help of their parents, able to keep their child.

      Ya can’t tell me there were tens of thousands of women getting beaten up all around NZ –

      More ignorance. Because, dick-wad, yes, there were.
      (Are you, too, an American? I ask because you cover all the bases in regard to the ‘welfare queen’ meme – and use a shedload of Americanisms..)

    • Blighty 6.2

      yeah, let’s go back to the golden days before 1974 where raping your wife wasn’t a crime, where physical ‘discipline’ of both wife and children was widespread, where children had to be adopted out and where women had to prove it was the man’s fault to get support if they left him.

    • felix 6.3

      Wow, I don’t think I’ve seen so much ignorance in a single comment for a while.

    • Populuxe1 6.4

      Yeah, because being pregnant is so much fun! Not to mention any woman can get pregnant at the drop of a hat… Oh and being a solo parent is non-stop jollies…. You, Jimmie, are a disgusting and ignorant man.

    • rosy 6.5

      A silly question to ask – if the DPB was introduced solely to allow battered women to leave an abusive relationship why don’t they make it a requirement to get the DPB for the batterer to have been prosecuted and convicted in relation to the assault.

      Yes, a silly question. The DPB wasn’t introduced to allow women to leave violent men. It was introduced so single parents (usually mothers) could have an income that they would otherwise have had to go to court to get from the child/ren’s non-custodial parent (usually fathers).

  7. Colonial Viper 7

    There is a serious misunderstanding on this thread around workers vs robots. During times of increasing systems and resources fragility, human workers will win usually win. During times of increasing energy and resource abundance, mechanisation and automation will usually win.

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    2 weeks ago
  • Week That Was: Getting people into jobs
    This week, we rolled out the next steps of our recovery plan, with new infrastructure investment, extra support for tourism operators, and a new programme to get Kiwis into agriculture careers. The global economic consequences of COVID-19 will continue to be a challenge, but we have a detailed plan to ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Coalition commitment establishing Mental Health Commission delivered
    Jenny Marcroft MP, Spokesperson for Health New Zealand First welcomes the passage of the Mental Health and Wellbeing Commission Bill through its final reading in Parliament today fulfilling a coalition agreement commitment. “This is an important step in saving the lives of New Zealanders and delivers a key coalition commitment ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Whakatāne gets a $2.5m ‘turbo boost’
    Whakatāne has been given a $2.5 million boost to speed up previously funded projects and create more than 450 jobs in the next decade. Of those, the equivalent of 160 full-time jobs could be delivered in the next six weeks. Deputy Prime Minister Winston Peters is in town to make ...
    2 weeks ago
  • $2.5m PGF funding to speed up economic recovery in Whakatāne
    Rt Hon Winston Peters, Deputy Prime Minister Fletcher Tabuteau MP, Under-Secretary for Regional Economic Development The Provincial Growth Fund (PGF) is investing $2.5 million to accelerate three infrastructure projects in Whakatāne, Deputy Prime Minister Winston Peters and Under-Secretary for Regional Economic Development Fletcher Tabuteau announced today. “This package is about ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Shane Jones calls out those holding drought-stricken Auckland ‘to ransom’ over water
    Infrastructure Minister Shane Jones is throwing his weight behind a bid by the Auckland Council to fast-track the more than doubling of the city's water allowance from the Waikato River. And he's coming out strongly against anyone who plans on getting in the way of this campaign. "It is my ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Another Green win as climate change considerations inserted into the RMA
    The Green Party is thrilled to see changes to the Resource Management Act (RMA) that mean consents for large projects can be declined if they will have significant climate change implications that are inconsistent with the Zero Carbon Act and Aotearoa New Zealand’s Paris Agreement obligations.  ...
    2 weeks ago
  • New Navy vessel Aotearoa to arrive in New Zealand
    Hon Ron Mark, Minister of Defence The Royal New Zealand Navy’s new ship, Aotearoa, set sail for New Zealand on 10 June from the Republic of Korea, and is due to arrive in Auckland tomorrow, announced Minister of Defence Ron Mark. “Aotearoa is the Royal New Zealand Navy’s new fleet ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Racing Industry Bill passes third reading
    Rt Hon Winston Peters, Deputy Prime Minister, Minister for Racing Racing Minister Winston Peters has today welcomed the Racing Industry Bill passing its third reading, creating the legislative framework for revitalising the racing industry while limiting the need for future government intervention. “For too long our domestic racing industry has ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Green Party seek amendment to ensure all prisoners can vote
    The Green Party has today put forward an amendment to the Electoral (Registration of Sentenced Prisoners) Amendment Bill to ensure all people in prisons can vote in general elections. ...
    3 weeks ago
  • Green Party welcomes new approach to delivering light rail
    The Green Party welcomes the decision to not proceed with Public Public Investment (PPI) delivery of Auckland’s light rail project and to instead run the process through the public service. ...
    3 weeks ago
  • New Zealand First welcomes PGF investment in Wairarapa Water
    Hon Ron Mark, New Zealand First List MP based in the Wairarapa New Zealand First List MP Hon Ron Mark welcomes the announcement of Provincial Growth Funding investment of $1.4 million to help secure the Wairarapa’s water supply. The funding boost will allow the Greater Wellington Regional Council (GWRC), and ...
    3 weeks ago
  • New Zealand First MP Mark Patterson selected as candidate for Taieri
    New Zealand First list MP Mark Patterson has been selected to represent the party in the newly formed Taieri electorate at the upcoming election. Mr Patterson, his wife Jude and two daughters farm sheep and beef at Lawrence and Waitahuna. He previously stood in the Clutha-Southland electorate however boundary changes ...
    3 weeks ago

  • Inaugural launch of Kiribati Language Week
    The Minister for Pacific Peoples, Aupito William Sio is pleased to announce the inaugural launch of Kiribati Language Week as part of the 2020 Pacific language Weeks programme. “I am so pleased that this year we are able to provide resourcing support to the Kiribati community in Aotearoa which will ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • New support package for wildlife institutions
    Wildlife institutions affected by a loss of visitor revenue during the COVID-19 lockdown are set to receive government support with nearly $15 million of funding available announced Minister of Conservation Eugenie Sage.  “Eco-sanctuaries, zoos, aquariums, wildlife parks, and wildlife rescue, hospital and rehabilitation facilities provide crucial support for the recovery ...
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    1 day ago
  • 300,000 students to benefit from free mental health services
    The Government is expanding and accelerating frontline mental health and wellbeing services at tertiary education institutes (TEI) to help students manage ongoing stresses related to COVID-19. “The lockdown has been hugely disruptive for students. Many of them have had to relocate and move to online learning, isolating them from their ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Gang crime, meth harm targeted in Waikato
    The Minister of Police says a major operation against the Mongrel Mob in Waikato will make a big dent in drug harm and violent offending linked to organised crime networks. “Senior leadership of the Waikato Mongrel Mob has been taken out as a result of Operation Kingsville, which resulted in ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Supporting victims and families to attend mosque attack sentencing
    The Government is extending the border exception criteria to enable some offshore victims and support people of the Christchurch mosque attacks to attend the sentencing of the accused beginning on 24 August2020, says Immigration Minister Iain Lees-Galloway. “We want to support our valued Muslim brothers and sisters who were directly ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Boost for community freshwater restoration projects
    A project to support volunteer efforts to look after streams and rivers is getting a boost thanks to support from DOC’s Community Conservation Fund announced Minister of Conservation Eugenie Sage today.  “The government is backing efforts to look after waterways with $199,400 for the Mountains to Sea Conservation Trust from ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • More support for women and girls
    Minister for Women Julie Anne Genter today announced that funding for the COVID-19 Community Fund for women and girls will be doubled, as the first successful funding applications for the initial $1million were revealed. “Women and girls across the country have suffered because of the effects of COVID-19, and I ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Crown accounts stronger than forecast with higher consumer spending
    The Government’s books were better than forecast with a higher GST take as the economy got moving again after lockdown, Finance Minister Grant Robertson says. The Crown Accounts for the 11 months to the end of May indicate the year end results for tax revenue will be stronger than forecast. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Govt releases plan to revitalise wool sector
    A plan to revitalise New Zealand’s strong wool sector and set it on a new, more sustainable and profitable path was unveiled today by Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor. The newly-released report - Vision and Action for New Zealand’s Wool Sector - was developed by the Wool Industry Project Action Group ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Funding for Predator Free Whangārei
    Community efforts to create a Predator Free Whangārei will receive a $6 million boost, Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones and Conservation Minister Eugenie Sage announced today. The new funding, through Government company Predator Free 2050 Ltd, will create around 12 jobs while enabling the complete removal of possums over ...
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    2 days ago
  • New Zealand to review relationship settings with Hong Kong
    Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters has announced that the New Zealand Government is reviewing the settings of its relationship with Hong Kong. “China’s decision to pass a new national security law for Hong Kong has fundamentally changed the environment for international engagement there,” Mr Peters said. “New Zealand remains deeply ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Funding for Whangārei’s infrastructure projects revealed
    Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones has announced details of a multimillion-dollar investment in Whangārei for infrastructure projects that will help it recover from the economic fallout from the COVID-19 pandemic. More than 200 jobs are expected to be created through the $26 million investment from the Government’s rejuvenation package ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Managed isolation and quarantine update
    Following a second incident in which a person escaped from a managed isolation facility, security is being enhanced, including more police presence onsite, Minister Megan Woods said. “The actions of some individuals who choose to break the very clear rules to stay within the facilities means that more resourcing is ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Funding for Kaipara district community waste programmes
    Waste reduction and recycling programmes in Kaipara are set to get a boost with Associate Environment Minister Eugenie Sage today announcing a $361,447 grant from the Ministry for the Environment’s Waste Minimisation Fund (WMF) Sustainable Kaipara. “The new funding will allow Sustainable Kaipara to partner with local schools, kura, community ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Government will support the people and economy of Southland
    The Government will support the Southland economy in the wake of multinational mining company Rio Tinto’s decision to follow through with its long signalled closure of the Tiwai Point aluminium smelter. “This day has unfortunately been on the cards for some time now, but nevertheless the final decision is a ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • New transformational tools for the Predator Free 2050 effort
    New tools being developed to help boost Aotearoa’s Predator Free 2050 effort were unveiled today by Minister of Conservation Eugenie Sage and Under Secretary for Regional Economic Development Fletcher Tabuteau. A new rat poison, a camera with predator recognition software to detect and report predators, a new predator lure and a ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • New Armoured vehicles for New Zealand Army
    The Coalition Government has approved the purchase of a fleet of Bushmaster vehicles to replace the New Zealand Army’s armoured Pinzgauers, Defence Minister Ron Mark has announced today. The new fleet of 43 Australian-designed and built Bushmaster NZ5.5 will provide better protection for personnel and improved carrying capacity. “The age ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Community-led solutions to prevent family violence
    The Government’s three prevention frameworks to reduce family violence in Aotearoa were launched this week by Associate Minister for Social Development Poto Williams.   The frameworks were developed in partnership with communities around New Zealand, and build on the work the Government has already begun with its new family violence prevention ...
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    4 days ago
  • Govt confirms investment in better radiology and surgical services for Hawke’s Bay
    The Government is pleased to confirm funding for improvements to radiology and surgical services at Hawke's Bay DHB, Health Minister Chris Hipkins says.     "The Minister of Finance the Hon Grant Robertson and former Health Minister Dr David Clark approved funding for Hawke's Bay DHB’s redevelopment of their radiology facilities ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Specialist alcohol and drug addiction services strengthened across New Zealand
    •    New funding for four beds at Napier’s Springhill Residential Addiction Centre •    A new managed withdrawal home and community service, and peer support before and after residential care at Tairāwhiti DHB  •    A co-ordinated network of withdrawal management services throughout the South Island •    Peer support in Rotorua and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Coastal Shipping Webinar
    Introduction, seafarers and POAL Good morning everyone, I am delighted to be online with you all today. Before I begin, I have to acknowledge that COVID-19 has disrupted the maritime sector on an unprecedented scale. The work of seafarers and the maritime industry is keeping many economies around the world ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Support for resilient rail connection to the West Coast
    A $13 million investment from Government will create jobs and improve the resilience of the rail connection between Christchurch and the West Coast, Infrastructure Minister Shane Jones and Regional Economic Development Under-Secretary Fletcher Tabuteau say. The funding comes from the tagged contingency set aside in Budget 2020 for infrastructure projects ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Major investment in safe drinking water
    The Government is investing $761 million to assist local government upgrade under-pressure water services across the country, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Local Government Minister Nanaia Mahuta announced today.  The announcement was made at the site of the water bore that was found to be the source of the fatal ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Supporting stranded seasonal workers to keep working with more flexible options
    Recognised Seasonal Employers and migrant seasonal workers stranded in New Zealand will be able to continue working and supporting themselves with more flexible hours and roles, says Immigration Minister Iain Lees-Galloway. The time-limited visa changes are: Stranded RSE workers will be able to work part-time (a minimum of 15 hours ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Relief for temporary migrants, employers and New Zealanders who need work
    The Government is making immediate short-term changes to visa settings to support temporary migrants already onshore in New Zealand and their employers, while also ensuring New Zealanders needing work are prioritised, Immigration Minister Iain Lees-Galloway says. We are: Extending temporary work visas due to expire by the end of 2020 ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Freshwater commissioners and fast-track consenting convenor appointed
    Professor Peter Skelton CNZM has been appointed as Chief Freshwater Commissioner and Alternate Environment Court Judge Craig James Thompson as Deputy Chief Freshwater Commissioner for the newly established Freshwater Planning Process (FPP). Environment Minister David Parker today also announced the appointment of Chief Environment Court Judge Laurie Newhook as the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Appointment of Judge of the High Court
    Auckland Queen’s Counsel Neil Campbell has been appointed a Judge of the High Court, Attorney‑General David Parker announced today. Justice Campbell graduated with a BCom and LLB (Hons) from the University of Auckland in 1992. He spent two years with Bell Gully Buddle Weir in Auckland before travelling to the United ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Feedback sought – Commercial Film and Video Production Facilities
    The Associate Minister for Greater Christchurch Regeneration, Poto Williams, is seeking feedback on a proposal to better enable the development and operation of commercial film and video facilities in Christchurch. The Proposal, developed by Regenerate Christchurch in response to a request from Christchurch City Council, asks that powers under section ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Govt launches bold primary sector plan to boost economic recovery
    The Government has launched a bold plan to boost primary sector export earnings by $44 billion over the next decade, while protecting the environment and growing jobs. Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern today released Fit for a Better World – Accelerating our Economic Potential, a 10-year roadmap to unlock greater value ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Wellbeing of whanau at heart of new hub
    A new approach to prevent family harm that encourages greater collaboration across government and community groups is being celebrated at the opening of a new facility in Auckland. Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern today opened the Multi-Disciplinary Family Harm Prevention Hub Te Taanga Manawa in Lambie Road in Manukau. The facility ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • New Report on Auckland Port Relocation
    The Government has released a major new report on the options for relocating the Port of Auckland’s freight operations while deferring any decision on the issue. “That decision needs to be informed by policy analysis that is still to be completed. As a result it will be up to a ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Dual place names for Te Pātaka-o-Rākaihautū / Banks Peninsula features
    The history of Rāpaki is being restored through the inclusion of te reo in thirteen official place names on Te Pātaka-o-Rākaihautū / Banks Peninsula and around Lyttelton Harbour/Whakaraupō, the Minister for Land Information, Eugenie Sage, announced today.   “I am pleased to approve the proposals from Te Hapū o Ngāti ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Government and Air New Zealand agree to manage incoming bookings
    Bookings for seats on Air New Zealand flights into New Zealand will be managed in the short term to ensure the Government is able to safely place New Zealanders arriving home into a managed isolation or quarantine facility, says Housing Minister Megan Woods.  “Last week Air Commodore Darryn Webb and I ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • $80 million for sport recovery at all levels
    Grant Robertson has today announced the first major release of funding from the $265 million Sport Recovery Package announced at Budget 2020.  “Today we’re setting out how $80 million will be invested, with $54 million of that over the 2020/2021 financial year for organisations from community level through to elite ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Keeping ACC levies steady until 2022
    The Government is maintaining current levy rates for the next 2 years, as part of a set of changes to help ease the financial pressures of COVID-19 providing certainty for businesses and New Zealanders, ACC Minister Iain Lees-Galloway says. “New Zealanders and businesses are facing unprecedented financial pressures as a ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Extended loan scheme keeps business afloat
    Small businesses are getting greater certainty about access to finance with an extension to the interest-free cashflow loan scheme to the end of the year. The Small Business Cashflow Loan Scheme has already been extended once, to 24 July. Revenue and Small Business Minister Stuart Nash says it will be ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • New investment creates over 2000 jobs to clean up waterways
    A package of 23 projects across the country will clean up waterways and deliver over 2000 jobs Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Environment Minister David Parker announced today. The $162 million dollar package will see 22 water clean-up projects put forward by local councils receiving $62 million and the Kaipara ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Speech to Labour Party Congress 2020
    Tena koutou katoa  Nga tangata whenua o tenei rohe o Pōneke, tena koutou Nau mai, haere mai ki te hui a tau mo te roopu reipa Ko tatou!  Ko to tatou mana!  Ko to tatou kaupapa kei te kokiri whakamua  Tena koutou, tena koutou, tena tatou katoa   Welcome. I ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • PGF top-up for QE Health in Rotorua
    The Provincial Growth Fund (PGF) is investing $1.5 million to ensure QE Health in Rotorua can proceed with its world class health service and save 75 existing jobs, Under Secretary for Regional Economic Development, Fletcher Tabuteau announced today. The PGF funding announced today is in addition to the $8 million ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Building a more sustainable construction sector
    A new programme, which sets a firm course for the Building and Construction sector to help reduce greenhouse gas emissions, has been announced by the Minister for Building and Construction Jenny Salesa. “A significant amount of New Zealand’s carbon emissions come from the building and construction sector.  If we’re serious ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago