Benefits not best for kids

Children do better in families which aren’t dependent on benefits.

This is the view of  Peter Hughes, outgoing chief executive of the Ministry of Social Development, who said::

“We know that for the same level of income, kids do better where that income’s derived from paid work.”

Commenting on this Lindsay Mitchell says:

It is a great shame that the outgoing CE has waited until now to make these observations. And that senior public servants seem unable to draw public attention to matters of considerable national importance to the country within the boundaries of an apolitical civil service.

Quite.

There is a place for benefits for those cannot work, most of whom require only temporary assistance.

But  paying benefits to people who don’t need them and long term benefit dependency by people who could work aren’t good for the recipients, their families or society.

This reinforces the wisdom of initiatives introduced by the government to work-test beneficiaries and help them become work-ready.

4 Responses to Benefits not best for kids

  1. robertguyton says:

    But where are the jobs?

  2. Roger Barton says:

    Seek and you might find! We have an 18 yr old local urban boy who has rock picked for us in the past. No real rural skills but good attitude. Having left school he is now doing preliminary training to be a deisel mechanic. He rang about a month ago looking for anything that he could do and has so far earned around $800 doing weekend work (mostly gorse spraying). He made ONE PHONE CALL to achieve this. We get less inquiries from University students looking for holiday work now than we used to. We still work/farm 8 km from town doing very similar things to 10 to 15 years ago but less inquiry. Why? I believe the student loan scheme has provided another “income” oppurtunity which has lessened the need for active paid work when and where it is available. Unscientific but a strong hunch.

  3. Lindsay says:

    Robert, The ageing population is already providing and will provide many more jobs. The push is for people to stay in their own homes as long as possible. It would be far better for ther state to pay for a helper to make this a possibility than to simply pay them a benefit. Caring work, whether it is in early childhood, out-of-school, elderly, special needs etc can be made more suitable for someone who wants to keep their child with them. What about creches in aged care homes?

    Concrete example – National is loosening up the bureaucracy around out of school care allowing them to expand. A work-tested DPB recipient could easily fill a part-time position in that field.

    It is just a matter of moving around some resources. Primarily out of welfare and into health and education. The needs that would provide jobs are there.

  4. gravedodger says:

    Many on the left of politics in this country fall into the beartrap of ignorance around what is a job.
    They seem to have an aversion to just helping out someone who is usually too proud to ask for such help.
    A basic benefit for an unemployed youth living at home is $150 pw.
    How many would offer work for $10 an hour for domestic assistance or low grade manual work that at present just gets left undone as it is just not worth any more than that $10 but 20 hours at $10 is a hellava lot more than a dole with the added benefits of skills and discipline that accrue.
    Hence the doomed mantra that they can legislate for wages that is an epic fail as if it were that easy then why not make it $25 an hour.
    Lindsay nails it, how long to get a list of 10 people (clients) struggling to stay on in their home or coping with a dud hand in the game of life, to have an hour a day two days a week to mow lawns, vacuum floors, tidy garden, assist with shopping, deal to trash or any other of he jobs that sharing with youth and staying in touch will bring by way of benefits to both parties.

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