The statistics are grim.
Beneficiaries owe MSD over $2billion in debt.
461,000 Kiwis are struggling with MSD debt, on average owing $3500 each.
Much of that is money owed thanks to MSDs relationship trap and from money loaned out to help desperate people face the cost of living crisis.
The idea that our largest welfare agency should hold almost half a million Kiwis in debt is a disgrace.
Welfare policy is creating debt slaves who will die in debt coffins.
We should not use relationships as a means to entrap beneficiaries, we should not loan the desperate money, we should cover those costs by the state when the need arises.
To hold 461 000 beneficiaries in debt while so many are hurting economically is disgraceful social policy that is leading to lives trapped by arrears they can never pay back!
This is counterproductive and punishment focused welfare from an agency that delights in being as difficult as possible to contact. Their obtuse service protocols are aimed to make the process of interacting with them hard so beneficiaries are forced off welfare or get caught out breaking some ill defined rule MSD has.
This is not a welfare agency with heart or values, it is a stick used to frighten the vulnerable into not asking for help in the first place.
We need a radical rethink of welfare and the first place to start is dumping beneficiary debt.