Government needs to step in to feed the kids

The Government needs to urgently reconsider its position to not provide funding for breakfasts and lunches for children who go to school hungry, the Green Party said today.

The call comes after an Upper Hutt community group revealed it is struggling to get businesses to support a local school lunch programme, and after a report from the Christian Council of Social Services which showed some parents can’t afford to pay for food as well as pay their rent.

“Thousands of Kiwi kids are going to school hungry every day, through no fault of their own, and the Government is standing by and expecting community groups to step into the breach and feed them,” Green Party spokesperson Marama Davidson said.

“Many New Zealand families are really struggling to make ends meet at the moment, and some are clearly having to forgo putting food on the table so that they can keep a roof over their heads.

“It’s admirable that community organisations like the one in Upper Hutt are willing to step up and feed the kids when the Government isn’t, but what happens when those community organisations can’t get financial backing?

“Leaving it up to cash-strapped community organisations to feed our hungry children clearly isn’t working, and that’s why we need the Government to step in.

“I currently have a Member’s Bill in the ballot to ensure that schools are able to access support to feed the students on their roll who aren’t getting enough breakfast or lunch to be able to learn properly.

“The Government could easily take that Bill on as its own, and get cross-Parliamentary support for it.

“If we want education to be a pathway out of poverty, then kids need to be able to focus on learning in class, not worry about their grumbling tummy.                          

“All children should have equal access to the opportunities that a good education provides, and part of that is to ensure they have enough good food in their tummies to be able to learn,” Ms Davidson said. 

Action

Join our call to stop funding fossil fuels!

Take Action

Action

Virtual Events

We have activists across Aotearoa / New Zealand who are working hard to build a brighter future for our kids and grandkids. This page lists upcomin...
Take Action

Action

Support our Climate Action Plan for bigger bolder climate action

We agree with all five of the School Strike for Climate's demands. Read more and sign the petition.
Take Action

Action

Show your support to end housing inequality

New Zealand’s housing market is becoming increasingly divided between people who own their own homes and those forced to rent for life...
Take Action

Latest Children Announcements

Story

Food in Schools: caring for our children’s future

The Green Party is welcoming today’s announcement of a pilot programme to provide school lunches in 30 schools, expanding to 120 schools by 2021. “...
Read More

Story

Report affirms call for Māori-led approach to keeping tamariki safe

The latest Safety of Children in Care report shows the current processes of the state are not keeping tamariki safe, says Green Party co-leader Mar...
Read More

Story

A much needed boost for Kōhanga reo

The Green Party welcomes the Government’s move to provide a funding boost to kōhanga reo, said Green Party Co-leader Marama Davidson. “We have seen...
Read More

Story

Child Poverty Reduction Bill early Christmas present for New Zealand

The Green Party welcomes passage of the Government’s Child Poverty Reduction Bill, which lays the foundation for genuinely pulling New Zealand kids...
Read More

Policy

Children Policy

All children in Aotearoa New Zealand deserve the best possible start in life. Children should be prioritised in all relevant government actions Ch...
See More

Story

Parental leave policy leaves kids in need behind

National’s parental leave policy is a last minute U-turn that still leaves tens of thousands of new parents and babies without support, the Green P...
Read More

Latest Social Development Announcements

Story

Marama Davidson's State of the Planet speech

Mā te oranga o te taiao, ka ora ai te iwi, mō te takitini kāore mō te torutoru anake. Nei ra taku mihi tuatahi ki a koe e te koka o te ao, korua ko...
Read More

Policy

Equality

Everyone should be treated equally, with access to what we need to live a good life.  In government we've fought to implement policy that ensures...
See More

Story

​Lifting incomes a priority: Green Party

The Green Party acknowledges the Government’s progress report on implementing the recommendations of the Welfare Expert Advisory Group, as highligh...
Read More

Story

Welfare reform key to a just transition that is inclusive and fair

The Green Party has welcomed the Council of Trade Unions’ call for a people-led, people-focused response to climate change, including increasing be...
Read More

Story

Ensuring fairness and safety for victims of sexual violence in the justice system

The Government will introduce law changes later this year to ensure that the justice system, in prosecuting sexual violence cases, does no more har...
Read More

Story

New laws to address family violence and keep victims safe from 1 July

New family violence laws will increase the safety of victims and their families, create effective interventions for people who use violence, and en...
Read More