Friday, October 04, 2019

Preposterous idea from National

If this is true...

While Bridges wouldn't speak directly to the policies being considered, it's understood they include fines of up to $3000 for parents of children who leave high school and don't enter further education and training. 
... it's a preposterous policy.

If a 16 year-old wants to leave school and get a job what's that got to do with the government?

If the idea is about not having to support them with welfare payments, then stop the payments.

Plenty of people leave school with no further 'formal' education and do OK for themselves.

National risks the taint of authoritarianism when they come up with this kind of thinking.  It makes it much harder for them to rightly criticize the current government for over-regulating and over-taxing.

And Bridges just handed an opportunity to Ardern to look like the more sensible of the two when she responds that "reducing barriers" is a better option than fines.

Overall National's approach to welfare, especially under Bill English, was much more visionary and far-thinking than Labour's but this is a stupid idea and it will probably become the soundbite and what sticks.

Sunday, September 29, 2019

WINZ tougher on beneficiaries in regions with high Maori populations

A post at the Daily blog complaining that Carmel Sepuloni had only reduced sanctions by 20% led me to check because I thought it was higher.

In fact sanctions are on the rise again, up 34% between December 2018 and June 2019. What is fascinating is how unevenly they are applied however. The regions of East Coast, Northland, Bay of Plenty and Waikato have really ramped them up. All high Maori beneficiary populations. So has Wellington. 

As you can see from the chart below the application of sanctions is changing quite rapidly. In December 2018 Auckland applied more than double the sanctions that Waikato did. By June 2019 the two regions were almost on par - with vastly differing beneficiary population numbers.

I am not going to do the classic left thing and label this uneven application as 'racism'.
On my reading of WINZ history and Maori politics it is usually Maori who are tough on Maori. Many of the case managers are Maori. And you only have to reflect on Shane Jones attitude to his nephews...Sir Apirana Ngata even managed to get prohibition introduced on the East Coast when he was in parliament. Or a ban on sales of alcohol to Ngati Porou at least.

Anyway it is good to see that sense is prevailing in those regions when there is so much demand for labour (with a small 'l'). Carmel's corrupted concept of 'compassion' has not prevailed.