The Green Party today recommitted to working with all other political parties on a cross-parliament plan to eliminate child poverty in New Zealand.
The Child Poverty Action Group today launched its major policy paper of the election Our Children, our Choice: Priorities for Policy, which calls for cross party political agreement on an action plan to on child poverty.
“The Green Party is the only major party committed to ending child poverty,” Green Party Co-leader Metiria Turei said.
“We have made child poverty one of our three key election priorities this year and we are putting our money where our mouth is, committing $1 billion to raise incomes and provide more and better services.
“Over the past 30 years successive governments have tolerated shocking levels of poverty and deprivation among our children.
“National likes to pretend that child poverty is inevitable, but the truth is child poverty can be eliminated. We have the tools and techniques. It is now simply a matter of choice.
“Our plan would raise family incomes and mitigate the impact that poverty has on a child’s life and their chance of a good education.
“We would increase minimum wage and introduce a new Children’s Credit that would mean an additional $60 a week for families who currently miss out on all the working for families payments.
“We’d also remove a discrimination in the Parental tax Credit and make the $220 a week payment available to all new-borns whose parents are not eligible for paid parental leave, for the first 10 weeks of their live.
“Our schools as community hubs programme will allow all children to reach their potential at school, by providing the health, welfare and social support they need onsite, at their local school.
“In Government we’d also establish a child poverty strategy with targets that Minsters would be accountable for meeting. This would be overseen by a new Minister of Children who would represent the interests of children at the cabinet table.
“This election is an opportunity to end child poverty and ensure our economy works for the benefit of everyone,” Mrs Turei said.