Organisations join call for harmful relationship rules to be scrapped – AAAP



On Monday 25th of November, International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women, ActionStation, Child Poverty Action Group (CPAG), and Auckland Action Against Poverty (AAAP) will come together with people who have directly experienced the impacts of the punitive Work and Income relationship rules, to launch an open letter calling on the Prime Minister to change how relationships are treated within New Zealand’s welfare system.

Speakers at the launch, which is taking place at the Ellen Melville Centre in downtown Auckland, include Ricardo Menendez March from AAAP and Associate Professor Susan St John from CPAG.

“It’s time for our Government to stop penalising couples by reducing their payments and putting extraordinary pressure on new couples. Nobody should be forced to give up their financial independence, or become trapped in abusive relationships because of government policy,” says Ruby Powell from ActionStation.

Other organisations who support this initiative and have already signed the open letter include the Aunties, HELP and Te Kupenga National Network of Stopping Violence Services.

TDB Recommends

The open letter will be launched at the Ellen Melville Centre in Auckland, on Monday November 25th. Media are warmly invited to attend.

What: Healthy relationships open letter launch

Where: Betty Wark Room in the Ellen Melville Centre, 2 Freyberg Place, Auckland CBD

When: 9am-10am Monday 25th November

          – Food and drinks available from 9am, Speeches 9.10am – 9.40am


  1. The Social Security Act dates back to 1964! The Domestic Purposes Benefit to 1973. What families and relationships look like in 2019 would have been inconceivable to Norm Kirk in ’73 or the ’64 Parliament. Marriage numbers have been in steady decline for over 30 years now, committed “defacto” relationships, blended families, single parents and same sex couples are totally the norm now.

    Transience of abode, and 50% and rising of NZers renting or living precariously, means disaster for some if even the pittance of WINZ/MSD benefits and payments is interrupted by branch policy or moralistic judgements. Good on CPAG and AAAP for raising this issue publicly again.

    ‘Income splitting’ where a benefit is unique to holder, regardless of the recipients flatmates, friends, relationships or social life should be applied to all benefits.

Comments are closed.