Rt Hon Helen Clark
Prime Minister of New Zealand
31 March 2007
Labour-led government delivers for families
Major initiatives coming into force on Sunday 1 April will make a significant difference to the lives of New Zealand
families, Prime Minister Helen Clark said today.
Helen Clark, accompanied by a number of Labour MPs, is today visiting the Mangere Town Centre market, to talk with
families about the policies coming into force on April 1.
They include the full implementation of the Working for Families package, the introduction of a minimum four weeks
annual holiday for workers, a 9.8 per cent rise in the minimum wage, and a significant boost to the rate of New Zealand
"Labour came into government in 1999 committed to providing opportunity and security to New Zealand families, and year
after year in government, we have delivered on our promises to families.
"The policies coming into force on Sunday show that the Labour-led government is serious about delivering real gains to
"The $10 per week, per child boost to family tax credits will benefit around three out of every four families with
children, and lifts tens of thousands of children out of income poverty. This is of huge importance to families and to
"Delivering on our promise of a minimum of four weeks annual leave will allow all workers to spend more time with their
families, and is especially helpful in giving working parents more time off during the school holidays
"I'm also very proud that our government is delivering a major increase in the minimum wage today. The 119,000 workers
on the minimum wage will get a 9.8 per cent pay rise as the adult minimum wage rises to $11.25 an hour, and the sixteen
and seventeen year old rate to $9.00 an hour.
"We're also making sure that older New Zealanders share our country's economic success. As agreed with New Zealand
First, the rate of New Zealand Superannuation and the Veteran's Pension are set at no less than 66 per cent of the net
average, ordinary time weekly wage.
"On Sunday, the single living alone rate lifts by $13.16 per week, and the rate for couples lifts by an extra $20.24 per
"These four initiatives are a big boost for families. And there is more to come, on 1 July, with the launch of Kiwisaver
and the achievement of universal affordable primary health care," Helen Clark said.