"A shameful disparity between the treatment of children in families who can work enough paid hours, and those children whose families cannot, means in practice New Zealand has two classes of low-income children. The "in work" worthy can be supported to the full extent of the social security legislation, and the children of the unworthy, the outcasts: beneficiaries, disproportionately the disabled, Maori or Pasifika, many with chronic illness, are consigned to remain in poverty.
The parents of the "undeserving children" may struggle in a casualised labour market, on low wages or with redundancies, or in the aftermath of disasters. Irrespective of the cause of low income, regardless of circumstance, all children could and should be afforded the same tax-funded child payments to ensure an adequate standard of living."
You cannot isolate a child from its parent. So in effect she wants all parents to be treated the same whether or not they work. This involves far more than the $25 benefit rise for parents scheduled for next year.
St John wants to increase "....child assistance by $72.50 a week for the very poorest families" and add "...$100 a week to the newborn's Family Tax Credit for one year for those who don't get paid parental leave."
"...spending of an extra $1 billion per annum is required immediately. This is what an "investment approach" to child poverty should look like."
An investment if more child poverty is what's wanted. How so?
With massive increases like these, having children becomes the way to (initially secure and) increase income. Because these children are being produced by people who have only a thought for the present, their life chances will be compromised. For example the parent who cares more for money than for their child's future will stay out of work and fail to set any example of industry and sacrifice. Or they will live in areas where there are no economic opportunities or prospects for offspring to do anything else but become the next generation of individuals who parent- for- an- income.
And who needs a husband or partner when the state is a better provider? So more sole parents....and more poverty. And more calls from CPAG to raise benefits...
It's time to stop throwing good money after bad and accept that strong family structure and work ethic are the two most important safeguards against poverty.