Lindsay Mitchell has a very sobering statistic: 22.2 percent of babies born in 2011 were dependent on a caregiver receiving a benefit by the end of the same year.
“Over one in five babies reliant on welfare by year-end is a sobering statistic. Almost half of the caregivers were Maori and half were aged 24 or younger.”
“There is an established pattern of childbearing followed by reasonably rapid, if not immediate, recourse to welfare in New Zealand. This occurs during good and bad economic periods.”
“The implications for this high percentage lie in the likelihood of these children remaining on a benefit for many years. . . “
This is the main cause of too many children growing up in poverty and shows why Social Development Minister Paula Bennett is determined to address the causes of benefit dependency.