Lifting benefits needs to be a top priority for this incoming Labour govt – AAAP

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The incoming Labour government has the mandate to govern how they see fit and Auckland Action Against Poverty see this as their opportunity to hold true to their vision for equality, sustainability, opportunity, freedom and solidarity as outlined in their manifesto. Transforming the welfare system and culture at WINZ and building and acquiring enough safe and secure public rental housing should be top priorities.

“Every day Auckland Action Against Poverty works with people on the frontline who’s circumstances are severely affected and impacted by the fact they don’t have enough money to survive” says Coordinator Brooke Stanley Pao.

“At the 2017 election Jacinda Ardern was very clear that child poverty was an issue that she wanted to address. In the last 3 years we haven’t seen the changes required to lift children and their families out of a malicious poverty cycle that keeps people disempowered. This has only gotten worse with Covid.

“Not only do they have a majority, they have the most Pacific and Māori MP’s ever. The communities we serve are majority Māori and Pacific and these politicians have a duty to ensure the changes these communities need are fast tracked by this Labour government.

“Poverty in this country is a crisis and deserves the same urgent response as Covid did. We here in Aotearoa have enough resources for all of us to thrive, and the only thing holding us back from supporting people into their full power is political and ideological will. Continuing to keep people trapped in poverty means continuing to uphold a colonial and racist system.

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“We are looking to them to individualise and raise benefits to liveable levels and remove all sanctions at WINZ because all of them are punitive. Let’s keep it moving toward a more just and Te Tiriti based Aotearoa for all.”

5 COMMENTS

  1. It’s absolutely pointless raising benefits when rents are out of control. It’s rents that are keeping people poor and preventing even working couples from saving for a deposit on their own home. Do something about rents and rampant residential property speculation. CGT anyone?

    • I agree RosieLee – not only rent but the cost of living in general, groceries are obscenely expensive; even worse if you actually want to eat healthy, there are too many entrenched monopolies and cartels in NZ, from telecoms, power companies, supermarkets and the building industry, its about time consumers got a fair go. Instead we get low wages, the majority of which go to bills, rent or mortgages with little disposable income left over to actually enjoy life – the system is increasingly geared to modern day slavery. Forget benefit levels and racial targeting, address the cost of living and housing for all.

      • I am among the esimated 86% of the ‘silent poor pensioners’ in this country.
        My family and I am suffering from all the same loss of sustainable human needs of cheaper food, cheaper power and lower rent.

        Pensioners need to be also placed in the “beneficeries” basket and recieve the same increase other beneficeries are recieving, and only the rich who recieve pensions should be left out of the “beneficeries” list.

        Make ‘a living income for all beneficeries manatory’ Labour.

  2. Why are you not pushing for more jobs and better wages than just asking for benefits to be increased. There are a whole lot of people that the state needs to look after due to their physical or mental state these should get more but there are plenty who can and should be working. The benefit system needs changing to make it easier to train and trial different types of work as you need a good fit to encourage the worker to stay. Families should be encouraged to not have more children until they have established themselves. All this will be for nothing if they cannot get a good home at a reasonable rent or mortgage . This is vital and should provide both work and stability to those at the bottom of the ladder.

  3. Why are you not pushing for more jobs and better wages than just asking for benefits to be increased. There are a whole lot of people that the state needs to look after due to their physical or mental state these should get more but there are plenty who can and should be working. The benefit system needs changing to make it easier to train and trial different types of work as you need a good fit to encourage the worker to stay. Families should be encouraged to not have more children until they have established themselves. All this will be for nothing if they cannot get a good home at a reasonable rent or mortgage . This is vital and should provide both work and stability to those at the bottom of the ladder.

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