The shocking rise in unemployment to 175,000 is the final nail in the coffin for the National Government's economic credibility, Green Party Co-leader Metiria Turei said today.
The 13,000 rise in unemployment reported in today's Household Labour Force Survey brings the total number of unemployed New Zealanders to 175,000 - the worst number in 20 years and an increase of 78,000 under National. Using the wider measure of joblessness, there are 294,900 jobless New Zealanders- the highest number on record and a 115,800 increase since National came to power.
"The National Government has failed New Zealanders; its economic record is in tatters," said Mrs Turei.
"Nearly 300,000 New Zealanders are out of work and unemployment is rising here while it is falling in most other countries.
"The devastating drumroll of job losses has continued today with Dynamic Controls closing its New Zealand manufacturing operations. That's another 40-60 highly-paid, high skill jobs lost, with little prospect of those workers finding similar work in New Zealand.
"What choice is National offering these workers other than to take their families to Australia and try to find a brighter future there, which John Key has so utterly failed to provide here?
"National refuses to even acknowledge the crisis in manufacturing that the over-valued dollar and poor government policy is causing. I fully expect that John Key will try to avoid facing the facts of these new jobs numbers, just as he has in the past.
"The Greens aren't afraid to face the facts. That's why we have proposed a set of policies to get the dollar down and have joined with other opposition parties to launch an inquiry into manufacturing to develop real policies to get New Zealand working again.
"And what will happen to the children of the nearly 300,000 Kiwis who are out of work under National? They didn't create this economic crisis, but they are the ones that suffer when their parents are struck by the double blow of losing their jobs and their Working for Families payments.
"The Greens' child payment policy would ensure that children aren't thrown into poverty by a crisis not of their making.
"New Zealanders deserve a government that has the drive and the ideas to create sustainable jobs, and won't abandon families when they fall on hard times. It is clear that National is not that government," said Mrs Turei.