To be honest I find it difficult to understand why anyone would want to mount an argument against children being enrolled with a doctor, completing WellChild healthcare checks (things like ante-natal weight monitoring and vaccinations), go to kindy and then onto school. This is what a large majority of parents expect to do as part of raising their children responsibly. It's also what what parents on benefits do. But some don't. Some do not even register the birth of their child. This results in those children described as "falling through the cracks". Paula Bennett has a way of trying to prevent this from happening. Using their benefit to motivate them to do all the right things by their children.
And I don't have a problem with it. Yes, it's state intervention and state compulsion but it is also the state protecting children whose parents are not up to the job.
And in the final analysis if you don't like these social obligations then don't go on a benefit. The rest of society has social obligations; to partners, to employers and to the government, like it or not.
Just did a pre-record on National Radio with Child Poverty Action Group's Janfrie Wakim. She wanted to make it a political fight. I think it's going to play after 8am if they use it.
Update: Interview here
Yes shock, horror I end by calling for the government to be allowed to do what it can to get the estimated 5 percent of children from highly stressed and dysfunctional families enrolled with a doctor, attending kindy and then school. Just remember, I am asking for this within the context of a benefit system which isn't going away any time soon.
28 minutes ago