INDEPENDENT NEWS

MP Judy Turner seeks help for NZ grandparents

Published: Wed 27 Nov 2002 08:15 AM
MP Judy Turner seeks urgent help for NZ grandparents
United Future family affairs spokeswoman, Judy Turner, is launching a campaign to get urgent financial help for thousands of New Zealand grandparents who are raising their grandchildren with great difficulty.
“It’s time to sort out the many inconsistencies that unclear government policy is creating so that we can address the genuine financial hardships experienced by thousands of caring grandparents who unexpectedly find themselves taking over childcare from their unwilling or unfit children,” said Mrs Turner.
“The Grandparents Raising Grandchildren Trust tells me it has over 6000 members throughout New Zealand. It believes this may be the tip of the iceberg as many people are unwilling to ask for help for fear of dobbing in the children’s parents who are often still claiming full benefits.
“These grandparents are doing a marvellous job, but worry about their own deteriorating health; what will happen to the children should the grandparent die; and the financial burdens they face in their old age from having to re-mortgage their homes to pay legal bills, school fees and all the other costs associated with childcare.”
Mrs Turner said current government policy was unclear about who would receive what benefit in these situations and it was time it was all sorted out.

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