INDEPENDENT NEWS

Who is counting the children?

Published: Mon 15 Aug 2011 04:55 PM
Who is counting the children?
CPAG applauds Every Child Counts for highlighting the economic costs of neglecting children's needs. Its new report “1000 days to get it right for every child” shows New Zealand has a very poor record indeed in child outcomes.
But while the economic costs of child poverty are high, spokesperson Susan St John says “lets not forget children also have a right to be happy, healthy, safe, well-nourished and appropriately housed, regardless of the effect on GDP.”
Since the early 1990s, Child Poverty Action Group and many other groups have reported regularly on the poverty experienced by literally hundreds of thousands of New Zealand's children.
"The better policies of other countries are producing much better outcomes for their children. We need to see where New Zealand’s policies are failing and be prepared to spend more” says Associate Professor St John.
John Key's response saying that the needs of poor children have to be balanced against the needs of other New Zealanders belies the seriousness of the situation.
CPAG agrees with the report when it notes that while low income may not always be the root problem, having access to sufficient resources is vital. “Let us ask, what does it take to allow young parents and their babies to thrive?” says Associate Professor St John. “The answer is not going to be just forcing sole parents of very young children to participate in paid work”.
“Our present policies are ineffective for far too many families. We must learn from other countries whose child well-being scores are so much higher. Better paid parental leave and support of new-borns; better housing policies; full access to health and early childhood education; removal of the discrimination against the poorest children in the benefit system; and less punitive policies for part-time work, are all part of the solution.”
ENDS

Next in New Zealand politics

On National Being Shafted By Its Own Creation
By: Gordon Campbell
Green Party: 'Fruitful discussions ... further discussions to have'
By: RNZ
No changes to border exemptions after fishing crew test Covid-19 positive
By: RNZ
Labour-led Government Has Mandate For Transformation, Equality And Transparency
By: Public Service Association
New Report Shows Significant Changes To New Zealand’s Climate
By: Statistics New Zealand
Judith Collins: Obese people must take responsibility for 'personal choices'
By: RNZ
Poll Reveals Tamihere On Cusp Of Historic Māori Movement Election Victory
By: The Maori Party
On Four-year Terms Of Parliament, And On How The US Courts Are Dismantling Democracy
By: Gordon Campbell
The NZ election saw record vote volatility — what does that mean for the next Labour government?
By: The Conversation
Election Night Results For The 2020 General Election
By: Electoral Commission
On Why The Greens Shouldn’t Join The Government
By: Gordon Campbell
A Government For All NZ Must Be Diverse - Greens Co-Leader
By: RNZ
Government Will Be Formed 'Within The Next Two To Three Weeks' - Jacinda Ardern
By: RNZ
Election Delivers High Expectations For Working People
By: E tu
Businesses Need Predictability And Acceleration
By: Canterbury Employers Chamber of Commerce
View as: DESKTOP | MOBILE © Scoop Media