Tuesday, February 22, 2011

DPB work-testing when youngest child turns three

According to the NZ Herald;

It is understood the group will tomorrow recommend solo parents get work from when the child is three years old, One News reported.

This will cause an unholy outcry.

But the recommendation is not radical by international standards.

The following table is now out-of-date but I can tell you that the trend is lowering the age of youngest child. Not lifting it. The UK and Australia have moved to 6 as has NZ. The US and Canada have a range of ages according to the state or province, with the US maximum of 1 year. Norway, France, Germany and Switzerland were work-testing at 3 when this table was published.

The Herald's Simon Collins has found a trier who can't get work, or much of it.

But this individual is not what the reforms are about. The reforms are aimed at reducing the sort of long term dependence that persists throughout periods of low unemployment. That's why the focus is on the DPB, the sickness and invalid's benefits.

Also some media commentators yesterday started talking up "benefit cuts". That is scaremongering and unnecessarily worrying those on benefits. The level of payments was outside of the scope of this report. Key has confirmed there will not be cuts.


Anonymous said...

Key won't take the suggestions on board, he's all about power at any cost. He will not want to lose voters en massee, this is the problem with MMP and our system of democracy.

Good calls by the Welfare Working Group, but I predict they'll mostly be ignored.

Anonymous said...

And now the ChCh earthquake has put everything onto the back burner.


Anonymous said...

Please don't underestimate the difficulty of finding work. I'm not on a benefit (because I have an investment income of sorts) but I have only had partial success finding work (at the minimum wage for a temp agency)since being made redundant 3 years ago and those temp opportunities have dwindled over the last six months.I'm computer literate, I'm fit and willing for heavy work, I have a clean licence and no convictions or addictions free...but I am 54...

ianmac said...

If you say it often enough Mum going out to work when the youngster is 3 or maybe 14 weeks becomes normalised. But the stick being waved horrifies me. Big difference between support for finding suitable work and having your support/benefit cut if you fail.