Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Welfare dependence is about more than the economy

Simon Collins writes about the contrast between National and Labour welfare policies. He also provides some "context":

Of course the main influence on welfare rolls is the economy.

This is highly arguable. Certainly it is the major influence on the unemployment benefit.

But we know for instance that the rate at which children are born onto welfare (either directly or shortly after) doesn't vary a great deal between booms and recessions.

Not a huge amount of variation. It's hovered around 1 in 5 for the past ten years.

Then the growth in numbers on sickness and invalid benefits has been positive for the past 40 years.

The other main point about "welfare rolls" is that numbers alone do not describe the depth of dependence. People who rely on an invalid or domestics purposes benefit do so for the longest times. Whereas most on the unemployment benefit are only there briefly. So while the economy is visibly affecting numbers on the unemployment benefit, their share of total dependence - or future liability - is much lower.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Simon Collins writes about the contrast between National and Labour welfare policies

There's a difference? A real difference?

on wait yes there is: Labour plans to cut "old white people's welfare" - aka the Super - and National doesn't.

ACT, Labour & National have exactly the same policies regarding core benefits - and those policies are to the left of Helen Clark, to the left of every benefit policy ever in NZ.

National loves beneficiares so much that they borrowed sixty billion dollars and blew it all on beneficiaries. No other party in NZ's history has ever show 'em so much love