National outlines welfare reforms
Sat, 21 Jul 2012 6:10p.m.
By Political Editor Duncan Garner
The National Party is promising more welfare reforms for next year.
It is called “social obligations”, and Social Development Minister Paula Bennett says if parents on the DPB don't enrol their children in a pre-school and get them regular health checks they will lose half their benefit.
The changes have been outlined at National's annual conference.
Prime Minister John Key is usually the star attraction at the National Party conference, but the speaker turned into a singer and stole the show – Lockwood Smith singing ‘God Defend New Zealand’.
Outside the conference they protested against changes and cuts in education, and there was more for the critics to be unhappy about inside.
National is starting to flesh out its second round of changes in welfare to come into law next year, called social obligations.
“We will be introducing social obligations, so they will have to enrol their child in early childhood education and get well checks at the doctor by enrolling the local PHO," says Paula Bennett.
So if you're on the DPB not only will you be expected to go back to work, but from next year you must fulfil these new obligations or you will be punished.
“If you have kids, then you will lose 50 percent of your benefit,” says Ms Bennett. “That's the worst case scenario. We hope it doesn't get to that.”
Away from the welfare changes, the economy dominated the day, with Finance Minister Bill English explaining the current economic downturn could last "a generation".
“The global economy is the dark cloud on the horizon and it's not going away for a generation, certainly 15 or 20 years anyway,” says Mr English.
“We've certainly had huge change,” says John Key. “It will take some time to bounce back.”
Mr English also targeted the Labour Party, saying they still promise the universe but can't pay for it.
“They're in a place called Planet Labour, where there was no global financial crisis and where you can still borrow as much as you like," says the Finance Minister.
National will party into tonight, but it has been a rocky six months. Mistakes have become much more common.
But they're still high in the polls, they're in power and they're applauding themselves for that.
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29/09/2012 2:05:07 a.m.
Just AFailure wrote:
Hey do you benefit bashers have any idea what your cruel, demeaning comments can do. I was so so proud of been a mother, raising my chid single handed to become a high achiever ,sacrificing my life to give to her. I see very little for my future now, when my job is done. Trust has gone, self esteem depleted. But I understand now...you just don't care. God bless
10/09/2012 1:38:48 p.m.
What about the 21 Trillion hidden in tax havens around the world how come we never hear about this MR KEY. This would solve the euro zone crisis.
8/08/2012 12:38:33 p.m.
@ROY 100% aggre with you I am only getting a student allowence of under 180 p/w, however if you contune to nag employers and keep filling out app forms EVERYDAY!! You WILL find a job. I did this and got a job in under 3 weeks! My nabours have 4 kids and she and he get the DPB and every payday I see them come back from town with 2 bags of shopping and 4 bags of alcohol, and I smelled cannabis most nights. That is where most of the benefit money goes, to the liqour stores and drug dealers, and not for there kids, witch is what the DPB is for!!! Stop the money side and only have the WINZ payment cards, topped up every week with the amount you get so you can only spend it on food and other things kids need.
22/07/2012 3:03:07 p.m.
National will be introducing "Social Obligations"? What about the "social obligations" of the Government? Like not selling our assets, our laws, and us down the river? Like not pandering to the corporate elite? Like not diluting workers rights & forcing wages down? Or gutting our public sector? Like not corporatising our education, penal, and welfare systems for private profit? Or how about the "social obligation" of creating an *inclusive* society? Like not disparaging & demeaning the most vulnerable in our society?
Given the lack of jobs, and the absence of any job creation plan, National seem hellbent on scapegoating the most vulnerable & disadvantaged of our society for their own political gain.
People are usually on welfare for economic reasons outside their control, not due to a lack of moral fibre. Yes, some people do bludge – just as some people cheat on their taxes. But the rate of benefit fraud is a miniscule 0.1%, with a proportion of that fraud being carried out by social welfare staff rather than beneficiaries
Without a credible plan to create jobs, this is just stigmatising & scapegoating the most vulnerable & disadvantaged, forcing people to compete with each other for the lowest paid work around, driving wages lower still. This is pandering to the business elite, providing an increasingly cheaper pool of exploitable labour. This is corporate welfare *AND* beneficiary bashing all rolled into one.
22/07/2012 12:00:21 p.m.
Wa waaa waaaaahhh. Suck it up. There's no such thing as free money and this country isn't a charity. How hard is it to break up your routine of sitting on your butt to take your kids to preschool or the doctors? You've had it to easy. It's time to pay your way. 'No jobs' is rubbish. What would you do if you couldn't get the dole to pay for food for your kids? You'd be out banging on doors all week until you find an income. There is work for those who are determined to get it.
22/07/2012 11:45:13 a.m.
The one Bill i do like myself is the 90 days, because i was able to be in employment getting skills and though some did not work out, i just carried on taking the skills i learnt and worked harder hoping to get my foot in the door and now i am at a job i really like and my confident is high and my new friends are awesome, i really do feel good.
The only thing i do not like about this Government is how they are trying to dictate how we should be living, everyone is different and everyone will do what is right when they are ready and don't be too hard on the Beneficiaries there are only a percentage that do rob the taxpayer, everyone would like to be working full time but until there are more jobs, that will not be happening, though our Goverment says there are jobs out there, there isn't really that many.
22/07/2012 9:26:44 a.m.
More extreme far right policies awesome.
22/07/2012 8:22:19 a.m.
David H wrote:
Nothing new here same ol' same ol' from every other failed NAT government for the last 20 odd years
22/07/2012 6:53:49 a.m.
Still no jobs and no ideas. Biggest bunch of idiots in one place at one time. Should have gone for guiness record lol
22/07/2012 1:59:46 a.m.
Welfare reforms? How about political reform?
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