This opinion-piece, from the Professor of Public Policy at Victoria University of Wellington, outlines ways the new Bill English-led Government could assist less well-off families in New Zealand. Considers income and wealth inequality and the need to reform public assistance for families. Refers to the recently published Child Poverty Monitor which highlights New Zealand’s unacceptable levels of childhood deprivation.
Concludes that investing in New Zealand families, especially the least advantaged, should be a priority for the 2017 Budget. Such an investment wouldl help reduce financial stress and material hardship. If well designed, it should also enhance social mobility, improve educational, health and employment outcomes, and generate long-term economic and fiscal dividends.
This commentary was originally published in the Dominion Post, 14 December 2016
Victoria University of Wellington, New Zealand 2016