Friday, April 01, 2016

Govt closes gap between benefit and employment income

Today beneficiary parents receive a pay rise of $25 weekly or $1,300 yearly.

It is impossible without asking an OIA question to know exactly what that means in terms of percentage rise. That's because even though basic rates are known and constant, all the add-ons vary individually.

The last time the government published an average beneficiary payment was 2013:

An average sole parent with two children under thirteen, living in South Auckland would receive around $642 on benefit, including accommodation supplement and a minimal extra allowance for costs.
As benefits are inflation proofed (though add-ons aren't) that would increase to $647.95 in the last quarter of 2015.

With today's increase she  would be receiving $673 a week.

The best figure to compare that to is the average weekly incomes from wages and salaries:

Female $752
Female Maori $723
Female Pacific $698

Either sex aged:

15-19 $345
20-24 $698
25-29 $852

The table I am quoting doesn't provide gender breakdown with age but female rates are overall  consistently lower than male.

So, all in all, for a young  sole mother - particularly Maori or Pacific -  $673 is looking fairly attractive.

Yes, the work-testing has been extended to part-time (20 hours) for mothers with youngest child aged 3.

But the work obligations are only ever useful in places where there are jobs.

It'll be interesting to observe the behavioural changes over the coming 2-3 years.

Remember that the early work-testing policy implemented to stop people adding children to an existing benefit has already failed.


Redbaiter said...

There are so many better solutions to welfare problems yet National are apparently incapable of even considering them let alone implementation.

Switzerland is one place they could get some good ideas from.

Swiss Welfare Runs Like Clockwork.

You know UBI will be National policy in a year or two don't you.

A few polls from Mr. Farrar. A few strategy discussions with Crosby Textor. Boom.. its done.

Same old same old compromisers & weaklings.

Anonymous said...

There are so many better solutions to welfare problems

Come on RB: there is only one: abolish welfare. Every other so-called welfare solution creates welfare problems. You get what you pay for.