One thing Labour urgently need to do right now is reform WINZ and MSD from their toxic culture

A WINZ meeting

One thing Labour urgently need to do right now is reform WINZ and MSD from their toxic culture.

The CTU made this point last month that the Government must reform the purposely obtuse system of welfare. The CTUs point was that it is humanitarian to reform welfare, my point to Labour is that it is potentially political suicide if they don’t.

WINZ and MSD are staffed by spite masters and sadists. They are purposely built to be as difficult as possible to deal with so as to turn desperate and vulnerable people away. The enormous economic collapse we are facing will put white working and middle class people into contact with the evil empire of WINZ and MSD for the first time in their lives and that experience is going to be potentially damaging for the Government…

The surprising demographic who took up the benefit most during COVID-19 lockdown

Of the 38,960 new job seekers during COVID-19 lockdown, almost 50 percent had little or no previous benefit history, and surprisingly, they were mostly Kiwis who earned more than the usual intake of beneficiaries. 

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Social Development Minister Carmel Sepuloni has revealed the results of a study of the 38,960 people who joined the jobseeker’s benefit during lockdown, which found that Kiwis earning $585 a week or more outstripped those earning less or with no previous income. 

She also revealed that 65 percent of the new job seekers were of European descent and Māori job seekers decreased as a proportion to 27 percent, compared to 42 percent last year. 

…these aren’t poor broken brown people who will remorsefully accept the shit WINZ and MSD force them to drink, these are Ok Karen Kiwis who will erupt on social media with furious anger the appalling manner in which WINZ and MSD staff are conditioned to punish the usual beneficiaries with.

Labour MUST reform WINZ and MSD to avoid the reality of their toxic cultures being experienced by the new wave of beneficiaries about to sign up for welfare because they will cause a political backlash in a place Labour are not expecting it.



  1. WINZ and MSDThey are carved in puritanical concrete which when it was poured flowed into weird shapes. They are only good now for outdoor art installations, sculptures etc which will stand up to the outdoor conditions far better than the soft living creatures they are used to dealing with. And that dealing hand is never (or to be fair, hardly ever) a winning one.

    I think we need completely different administrations doing things in entirely the opposite way. Life could be fun and the staff could concentrate on doing good. Train them up and start each day off in the office (instead of the officious) in the Gilbert and Sullivan style. And they will never ever be useless and nasty again, or hardly ever. (

  2. While we are thinking of new approaches to our government’s continual failure to produce positive outcomes, we might look at the police which have a similar obnoxious attitude to WINZ and MSD (Ministry of Social Devolution).
    This has happened in Hawke’s Bay.

    This is a big amount of money, which the police could say they have earned. And having broken into this vicious circle of crime, they should then have the opportunity to reduce future crime by running education programs, work groups under supervision who would earn real decent money for doing something worthwhile for a change, and help the young ones trained up to find employment elsewhere so lessening the likelihood of being attracted back to the local criminal activities.

    I am sick of hearing about deaths from police patrolling with the avowed intention of preventing vehicle crime and accidents. Let them get into a positive mode instead of the narrow anti-social one they share with the possible small-time crims they are chasing. Then we will have a chance to make our country great again, and have a force we can respect. I was looking at police history the other day and they took the word ‘force’ out of their name, but you can take the word out of the force, but you can’t take the force out of the police. It is needed, but needs to be applied differently, and changes made soon, as they seem to be developing ingrained bad habits.
    July 2019
    2017 Former cop says police in Urewera raids lacked ‘intelligence gathering’
    Former police officer Harawira Pearless – who had previously carried out surveillance in the Urewera Ranges – said the decision to cordon off the entire Ruatoki township showed uncertainty by police as to who they were after.
    Since leaving the force, he has become a historian and wrote his masters’ thesis comparing the Ruatoki raids to earlier significant police action against Maori at Parihaka in 1881 and Maungapohatu in 1916.
    “What it said was that in regard to police and Ruatoki in 2007, police operating tactics and procedures had not changed in more than 100 years.”

    2007 –

    Doing things differently – forging new procedures and precepts.
    Police could do things differently too, if they could force their minds to conceive new ideas, then initiate new and practical approaches for better outcomes. A reasoned idea, not a lot of gobbledegook – it would require thought though, considerations, and after each meeting a decision to implement something small immediately.

  3. Ok Karen Kiwis ….

    R0FL !

    Lovin’ it.

    Yep, wholeheartedly agree. The capitalists made it, the capitalists sleep in it. This is what you get for your callous , belligerent indifference. SHIT.

    A world of SHIT , created by YOU , the neo liberals. The chickens have come home to roost and now the SHIT is flying everywhere, – and YOU created it . Now live with it. Deal with it. Because if you don’t, – there will be ever increasing layers of SHIT. Your SHIT. And SHIT stinks.

    Politically and economically.

    You want a repeat of the 1930’s food riots down Queen St , Auckland,…


    Then get off your arse’s, because that sort of SHIT, – topples governments. Learn from history, numbnut’s , and learn from the SHIT prior generations had to deal with.

    SHIT is multifaceted, and can be either the good or bad kind,…the good SHIT is actually great stuff in the horticultural sense, it stimulates growth and lush vegetation, – and as an analogy , – can stimulate the electorate so much so that if politicians don’t use the good SHIT to woo the voters , then paradoxically , they WILL end up in a world of the bad SHIT variety.

    SHIT is where you find it. Like gold.

    The choice is yours if you want to use the good SHIT politically or the bad SHIT which WILL put you in the opposition benches.

    Disregard the working poor and the unemployed AT YOUR PERIL.


  4. They missed the chance of a UBI. The death cult capitalist never let a crisis go to waste and introduce ‘horrid measures’ when the ‘Fit hits the Sham’. So why couldn’t Labour use this crisis to introduce a UBI and kill off the embarrassment that is MSD/WINZ in one easy action. I guess because they NEVER intend to help the poor and needy, they just want to be seen to be trying to help. Hence the believe that they really are just ‘TraitorKey light’.
    The control file on Jacinda et al must be powerful !

    If not, then when?

  5. WINZ need an ‘overhaul’ as they are full of Bureaucratic monsters.

    So Jacinda change this sick agency ASAP.

  6. Spot on Bomber.
    If it were me I would be demanding the end of ‘resource gatekeeping’ and focus on helping beneficiaries find something that they want to do with their lives and cut down the barriers that are stopping them achieving it.
    With no judgement on what it is that they want to do.
    If little Johnny/Jonette wants to be an Airline pilot then the case worker should be helping them enrol in the classes that they need and encouraging them to give it their best shot.
    If they fail they need to be there to help pick up the pieces and move to the next plan.
    But not allowing people a crack at their dreams to save a couple of bucks is criminal. My pick is it wouldn’t be any more expensive either and would be great for social harmony.

    • Yes Pete let people have drams and ambitions and encourage them to strive, cope with failure, ponder, regroup and change routes to the goal. And I am not putting this essential idea down when I say that determined people will follow this pattern. We need to provide good, socially satisfactory routes. Otherwise the results of gang culture going into drugs is an awful example of how people with determination will find the wrong path to a life within community where they can get respect and make some sort of life.

      And also there are people who will turn to cults which we hear about FTTT where women lose all their personal agency, and men have to conform and agree with ideas that prevent them thinking for themselves, and becoming a self-actualising person.

  7. Any ideas? I mean it’s a bloody big one…
    Changing people’s attitudes and ingrained behavioral patterns towards individuals in need. You’re talking about changing people, who are merely employees, at the core of their own personal beliefs.
    Nice idea, can’t be done.
    Replacement of all jaded and disaffected staff members could only start after new standards were implemented and the review process have run through.
    Only then could one think about it. The trouble is you will be introducing new staff to the old practices in the transition.

  8. I haven’t experience asking MSD or WINZ for help. God forbid. But, I have dealt with people working for them. Agree..they are a bunch of monsters. Rude and difficult to deal with. As a nurse, they are the worst patients. I am Asian with an ok Karen attitude. Well educated with masters degree. To make the story short, I complained and wrote an incident report. I labeled one particular person’s behaviour “racist”. I never saw the witch again.

  9. All Labour have to (un)do is, … “When the Fourth Labour Government was elected. These changes included more private business models within government, a reduction in universal payments such as child benefits and an increase in targeted benefits, set at low rates and designed to only be a ‘safety net’.

    The goal of this macro-economic restructuring was to create more efficiency. The result was a rise in income inequality, which was indicative of other sweeping changes towards punitive, and profit seeking, policy models within health and welfare”.

  10. I’m shocked! How could you say such things about these sweet, hard-working people in WINZ? They have to face people who scream at them and cry and tell porkies. That’s so hard…

    And you still expect LABOUR to fix it?
    You’re having a laugh, right?

    Because they never bothered for six long and miserable years under the Amazing Helen. It was less cruel under Steve Maharey but the cruelty was still there. Unless you could leap over buildings in a single bound – full time employment at a decent rate – you were going to PAY to work.

    And Labour has never fixed that. Has it…
    Living wage – $884 a week before tax (40 hours) $22.10 an hour. Pensioners get less than half that – if they’re ‘lucky’. Beneficiaries get less.
    And that’s OK with Labour and the Social Warrior Greens.

    There’s more to fix and re-do than just the benefits system. From the morbid roots to the plump kitties on the topmost boughs.
    (And all this extra dosh being pumped into the system. Who is charged with following where it goes? Or is this simply a look-good conduit back to the banks and landlords? It may graze a few local businesses. Perhaps.)

  11. Gor, we hobbyists. Compared to our youth, fellow 70ists. Re politics. Why the rich steer us oblivious into their very own decided swamp.

    Martyn! I feel cut at by Bowalley and The Standard — you are my only safe place. You never harass me. Those fricken depts have ALWAYS been toxic. Why we fell under the rich. Our failure to fully trust one another.

    I thought you were talking about Labour’s failure to reform itself in the shortened headline. They could reform themselves as much as they like but they’d still have the same people. It’s so strange it’s only you in the younger generation, Martyn. Could you put the case for us being wrong?

  12. I was talking to a centre manager last week and she too is suprised at the volume of people in affluent Grey Lynn, Freemans Bay and Ponsonby that were applying for the bene.

    Without saying it in so many words, this Crisis is the worst shes ever seen. Shes bn around for 30+ years in the “Department”.

    I supose one good thing to come out of all of this, is the statistics. For once, the pakeha will be making the stats for the Maori and PI look better.


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