Income Support Policy

Everyone deserves decent work, a living wage, and to be treated with respect.

Work includes paid work, but also the vital, unpaid work of caring for children and family members, and volunteering in our communities.
Everyone should have enough income to fully participate in their community, and to live safe, healthy lives.
We support welfare policies that are sufficient to ensure this, simple to understand and access, and universal in their application.
We are committed to moving New Zealand back to a state of full employment – in which there is enough work for everyone who needs it. We support welfare policies that help to achieve this.

Key Principles

  • Everyone has a standard of living that enables them to participate in their community.
  • People have sufficient income for their personal and whanau/family's well-being.
  • People are actively involved in meeting their potential and creating a fulfilling life.
  • Greater emphasis on sufficiency, simplicity, universality.

Specific Policy Points

  • Work with other parties and the public to develop a proposal(s) for the introduction of a UBI and the changes needed to fund and implement it.
  • Set benefit amounts at a level sufficient for all basic needs of the individual/family.
  • Protect all benefit levels by linking rates to a fixed percentage of the average wage (like superannuation).
  • Replace the current Social Security Act 1964 with a simple two-tier benefit system consisting of a universal base rate that is enough to live on, with add-ons for specific circumstances, such as dependants, disability or chronic illness.
  • A Universal Child Benefit with the ability to capitalise it towards a home deposit.
  • Abolish stand-down periods, treat people aged 18 and over as adults for benefit purposes; no forced work for the dole.
  • Support urgent Government action to address the problem of benefit abatement for those moving into employment, and the removal of the poverty trap created by high marginal tax rates that exist for people on low incomes.
  • Introduce a tax-free zone at the bottom end of the income scale.
  • DPB to be protected; no compulsory work-testing.
  • Appropriate training, vocational advice and support for sole parents.
  • Remove discrimination from tax credit regimes such as the In Work Payment component of Working for Families.
  • Support an allowance to beneficiaries who carry out a minimum number of hours of voluntary work per week.
  • Improve the culture of Work and Income so that people are treated with dignity and respect and are enable to access their full entitlements promptly.

Read the full policy here