Our country has pulled together to protect the potentially vulnerable from Covid 19. We worried about the elderly and those with underlying health conditions and chose an inconvenient lockdown to save these people, and everybody else, from the virus. Let us continue to take care of the new victims of the lockdown and the consequent economic carnage. Those without jobs who are now at the risk of losing their homes and other assets before they are eligible for a benefit, low as it is, need help. We should share the misfortune of all those on benefits, and urge the government to be more generous in supporting them and their struggling families.
The Prime Minister calls us a team of 5 million. We can now resort to our earlier more selfish personalities where the devil takes the hindmost or we can continue to act like a team and support each other.
The new beneficiaries now without jobs and arriving at Income Support offices in numbers unseen since the great depression, are astonished and depressed by what life on a benefit looks like. What they see, and what we are now hearing about, is that government support through the benefit system is meagre and is at a level that denies the person and their family the dignity of living in a little comfort. Let’s face it, many people who previously had no idea about life on a benefit are now finding out. They are now shocked to find how difficult life becomes and their voices are being added to the voices of beneficiary advocates who have been stating for years that New Zealand social welfare support is offered at only derisory levels.
Government, please be part of our team and look after these people.