Greens will embed tikanga Māori into rewrite of social security legislation

The Green Party is putting a Member’s Bill into the ballot today which will be a significant step towards overhauling the Social Security Act by embedding a tikanga Māori framework into the welfare system. 

Green Party spokesperson for Social Development & Employment Ricardo Menéndez March will submit his Social Security (Purpose and Principles for the Elimination of Hardship) Amendment Bill today that will incorporate recommendations one and two of the Welfare Expert Advisory Group’s 2019 report. The key changes will be to embed Kia Piki Ake Te Mana Tāngata and Te Tiriti o Waitangi into the welfare system.

The Bill will also mandate the welfare system to “eliminate hardship”, rather than just “help alleviate hardship” as the Act currently says.

“Everyone deserves to live with dignity. But our current social safety net doesn’t do enough to help people get by and fully participate in their communities,” Ricardo Menéndez March says.

“Any changes to our social security need to centre whānau, hapū and iwi, as we know our system disproportionately affects Māori because of the ongoing impact of colonisation had on Tāngata Whenua.

“My Bill will be a significant step in our plan to totally rewrite the social security legislation and eliminate hardship, not just alleviate it.

“This Bill will be the start of changing the way Work and Income works on a day-to-day basis and the decision-making framework they must use when assisting people.

Green Party Māori Development spokesperson Dr Elizabeth Kerekere says this Member’s Bill will mandate the welfare system to whakamana tāngata.

“It is important we utilise the mātauranga Māori we have on what works for us. Our tikanga is something sacred and concepts like Tino Rangatiratanga, Mana Motuhake and Manaakiitanga need to be at the heart of changing our welfare system.

“As a party, we are committed to ensuring all New Zealanders and specifically Tāngata Whenua have a say on the issues that affect them, especially in the welfare system,” Dr Elizabeth Kerekere says.

As well as this Bill to change the purpose and principles of the Social Security Act, the Green Party will begin work on completely rewriting the legislation to be fairer and simpler, along the lines of our Poverty Action Plan, including a Guaranteed Minimum Income.

“We will work with Māori, disabled people and other affected communities, plus other experts, to develop new social security legislation. New Zealanders have been waiting too long for the Government to make the Social Security Act fairer and simpler, so the Green Party is going to do it.” says Ricardo Menéndez March.

ENDS

Latest Social Development Announcements

Story

Tinkering around the edges won’t cut it for families struggling to survive

Research released today reinforces the need for significant changes to our social safety net, the Green Party says.
Read More

Story

Green Party plans significant rewrite of social security legislation

The Green Party is putting a Member’s Bill into the ballot today which will be a significant step towards overhauling the Social Security Act.
Read More

Story

We have a poverty crisis in New Zealand, we need to do more

The Green Party is calling for the Government to do more for New Zealanders who continue to miss out, as main benefits are set to rise by less than...
Read More

Story

Working for Families reform must end discriminatory tax credits

The Government’s reported reform of Working for Families must put an end to the discriminatory tax credits that keep some kids in poverty, the Gree...
Read More

Story

Research shows New Zealanders want income support increased

New UMR research reveals that 69 percent of New Zealanders agree that the government should increase the amount if income support paid to those on ...
Read More

Story

Greens call for decent working conditions for all horticulture workers

The Green Party is calling on the Government to ensure all people working in horticulture are paid liveable wages and have access to quality accomm...
Read More

Latest Māori Development Announcements

Story

Our tamariki Maōri should not suffer any more: Greens

The Green Party welcomes the Waitangi Tribunal report that recognises mulitple breaches of Te Tiriti o Waitangi by the Crown.
Read More

Story

The Greens welcome whānau centred initiatives for Prisons

Today the Government announced a new whānau-centred Māori pathways programme in the Hawke’s Bay Regional Prison.
Read More

Story

Systemic racism rooted in Māori victimisation report

The Ministry of Justice Māori victimisation report, released today, reinforces what we already know about the impact of systemic racism in Aotearoa...
Read More

Story

RocketLab failing to properly consult with Hapū: Greens meet with ngā uri o Rongomaiwahine

Sunday 28th March, 70 Rongomaiwahine descendants welcomed members of the Green Party’s Māori Caucus, Te Mātāwaka, Dr Elizabeth Kerekere and Teanau ...
Read More

Story

Kāinga Ora borrowing ability should be increased, while ensuring a Te Tiriti o Waitangi based, community-focused approach

The new homes enabled through additional borrowing capacity for Kāinga Ora announced by Government today must have a Te Tiriti o Waitangi lens, hav...
Read More

Story

Seaweek: Green Party calls on New Zealanders to make submissions supporting Waiheke Rāhui to protect declining kaimoana

The Green Party supports the Rāhui placed around Waiheke Island by Ngāti Pāoa to protect declining kaimoana and as part of Seaweek, is asking New Z...
Read More