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Sob Story From Becroft

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‘Pension’ for kids could level income inequality between young and old

From Stuff;

A “pension” for kids is being touted as one way to address child poverty in New Zealand – and there’s a suggestion it could be funded by means-testing superannuation.

Data released this week by Children’s Commissioner Andrew Becroft showed 17 per cent of New Zealand children now live in households existing on less than 50 per cent of the median household income.

Almost 150,000 children have to regularly go without six or more essentials, such as decent shoes, enough food, the ability to see a doctor or pay electricity or gas bills on time.

How many kids pay for these six mentioned items? Talk about bullshit. All he is trying to do is increase the payments to the parents by using the kids as a sympathy thing.

Becroft said that meant a crowd of kids bigger than the population of Dunedin – or every spectator seat in Eden Park filled twice – was seriously struggling to get by.

The Government has pledged to get the child poverty rate to 10 per cent by the end of the 2021 financial year.

But while 26 per cent of kids live in low-income households, older people are doing much better. New Zealand has some of the lowest rates of poverty among elderly people in the OECD. Only 14 per cent of people aged over 65 live in low-income households. There are six times as many people aged under 18 suffering material deprivation as there are people aged 65 and over.

Commentators say the reason is clear – New Zealand Superannuation, which is not means-tested and is available to anyone who is over 65 and has met the residency requirements to receive it.

In 1993, a multi-party accord on retirement income policies ensured that increases to the pension would follow a price index, while being kept to between 65 per cent to 72.5 per cent of the national average wage. Other benefits are not indexed in the same way.

Economist Shamubeel Eaqub said the experience of superannuation showed that a universal payment was an effective way to reduce poverty in a swathe of the population.

Doing the same for children would have the same effect, he said. “Would it cost a lot of money? Yes. Would it provide lots of benefits? Yes.”

It would not be the first time such an initiative has been offered: New Zealand had a family benefit until April, 1991.

WHY NOT?

“If there was a Grey Power for children I doubt we’d be in this position,” Becroft said.

“What we did for the over-65s in the early 90s was terrific…if we were prepared to prioritise under-18s we could do the exact same thing with children, young people and families struggling.”

Families who relied on a benefit had fallen further behind in income terms over the past 30 years since rates were cut by the “mother of all budgets” in 1991, he said. The relativity of benefits to incomes had never recovered.

But Eaqub said politicians had to convince the voting public, who were reluctant to make sacrifices.

“If I had my way you’d take it away from the decrepit old folk and give it to the young ones. Make super means-tested and a benefit for children unconditional. Older people don’t need it, they have money.”

He said there was a perception that if parents were given money for their children “feckless” people would spend it on alcohol and drugs. “That’s a very unhelpful and unfair characterisation. Most people don’t do that.”

International studies had shown that predominantly when low-income people were given more money, they spent it on their children, he said. “I would rather have a benefit universally applied to that group of people than older folk who have had 60 years to accumulate wealth to look after themselves. Children have no choice There’s a much stronger case for universality for children.”

Researcher Jess Berentson-Shaw said the old-age pension had been driven from a desire to help people who were locked into “miserable post-work lives”. “Using that same lens to look at children – they’re potentially locked in for their whole lives, an experience in which they don’t get all the opportunities children born to wealthier parents do. They don’t get all these things people need to participate in society.”

Berentson-Shaw said the country would need to change its thinking from being around who “deserved” help to what would help people thrive. “What do people in New Zealand want for kids? We can have a conversation about the cost but if we agree we all want all children to thrive then what’s the most cost-effective way to ensure all children thrive? Super came about because it mattered that old people had okay lives after they retired. It really matters to us that children don’t just survive but do well.”

COST AND PAYBACK

How much such a scheme would cost would depend a lot on how it was designed.

Becroft said it could be done. “We have got a surplus. Borrowing is just about dirt cheap, free. Why didn’t Grant Robertson spend some of the $12 billion on children and families instead of infrastructure? It would grow the economic immediately and benefit families and children immediately. I would be in flat out dereliction of duty if I didn’t challenge the Government on that point.”

He said he could understand the reasoning for a call for universality of a benefit for children but said, given the statistics, it would be most effective to target extra money at the children whose families were struggling the most. “Those to whom the trickle-down effect did not reach.”

Berentson-Shaw has argued for an unconditional payment of $200 a week for families raising a child under three and additional payments for low-income families. She said the evidence showed that targeting the youngest years of a child’s life would have the biggest payoff.

That would cost about $1.8 billion on top of current paid parental leave and parental tax credits.

At the moment, the pension costs about $12b a year, an amount that is forecast to increase significantly over time as the population ages.

There are about 1.5 million households with dependent children.

Eaqub said any investment in improving their wellbeing would provide a payoff for the country in terms of children’s eventual employment outcomes, better health and less crime.

Berentson-Shaw agreed: “The conversation about poverty isn’t as useful as a conversation about what it does for people’s lives and for the wider society. When a whole lot of people are doing better, of course the country will do better.”

New Zealand was in the best position it ever had been to tackle child poverty, Becroft said. Parliament’s almost-unanimous pledge to tackle child poverty was remarkable and would have been inconceivable from past Governments.

But it would require a bold, targeted effort. “Roll on supporting infrastructure in New Zealand but why is it either or? Why not inject into the economy spending by families on children?”

 

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30 COMMENTS

  1. Wanker! We allready have a pension for kids!
    It’s called Working For Famiy. Dickhead!
    Helen Clark bought it in years ago. Where have you been hiding, you safe space?

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  2. So basically Becroft is talking about returning to the ‘bamily benefit’ system cancelled decades ago for a ‘better’ system. Do these lefties ever come up with any new, original, actual workable ideas?

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    • I imagine Becroft is on a excellent troughing salary while he espouses his socialist wisdom for the nations poor children.

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      • His family settled on the Kaipara if I recall correctly. Or at least his family name crops up with my family around Port Albert, my family were shipped out of the area for higher schooling, my father went to Wesley as an example. I assume others were too.

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  3. He would be on my top things to do in my first 100 days as National leader.
    If you cant afford them, don’t have children.

    Get a good job, get a good husband or wife, buy a house, then have one or two children.

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  4. If that pompus arsehole carried about children he would complain about some of the pathitic sentences given to serious child abusers. He has also been silent about the 15 year olds sexually abused at the Labour Youth Camp as well as them being supplied with alcohol. He also has been silient about cannabis.

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  5. So force Grandma and Grandad to sell their family home because you are axeing their pension- Then give all that money to a South Auckland Solo Mum with 9 kids to assorted Gangmembers?
    Ain’t Socialism grand??

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  6. No accountability, no responsibility, while Becroft will be collecting a good paycheck & then looking to a pension & gold-plated superannuation, all backed by demanding money/taxes with menaces.

    Becroft said it could be done.
    “We have got a surplus. Borrowing is just about dirt cheap, free.

    Yeah right, no work, everything to be provided & be free, on what carbon free planet?. 🙁

    Another version of this was to borrow more on the house, business, or farm, as its value is going up faster than you can spend it.
    The result was the “reckoning” in the 1980’s

    Oh that is for NZ as well, just like Greece, lent money left right & centre, at Olympian quantities. Then the lenders forced bank closures, = haircuts, done by banks on peoples deposits, & austerity by reduced pensions, reduced health services & medicines, etc,

    Just see how the UN will have strings attached, via IMF & World Bank systems, like the UN Migration Pact, etc..

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    • “We have got a surplus”

      How many times do these idiots need to be reminded that a very large part of the “surplus” was due to revaluations and you CANNOT spend a revaluation..

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        • These ones know what buttons to push, even on themselves with “feelz” of self-gratification, and finding & using the powers of the deep state in the many “working groups”.

          Building up expectations, and that one will not be disappointed with the Coalition of Green, Labour for another term.
          Selling the dream that one will be so much more rewarded under CoL, so long as you keep voting for them.

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  7. Becroft is a stuttering piece of thieving socialist filth sucking away on the public tit.
    No surprise that he is also a god botherer.
    He reminds me in mannerisms and look of the Red Reverend, Russell Marshall.

    The Critter in Colour:-
    …His Honour Judge Andrew Becroft was appointed a District Court Judge in 1996. In 2001, he became the Principal Youth Court Judge of New Zealand; a role that he held until 2016 when he was appointed the Children’s Commissioner
    He practised in Auckland with the firm Fortune Manning & Partners until 1986 when he then assisted with the establishment of the Mangere Community Law Centre and worked there until 1993. He then worked as a criminal barrister in South Auckland until his appointment to the District Court bench, sitting in Whanganui, from 1996.
    He is an editor of LexisNexis “Transport Law”,
    the Patron of the New Zealand Speak Easy Association Inc., which assists those with various forms of speech impediment,
    Chair of the Board of the Tertiary Students Christian Fellowship (NZ) Inc,
    and Chair of the Wellington College Football Club…

    https://www.stuttering.co.nz/news/judge-andrew-becroft-principal-youth-court-judge-and-childrens-commissioner/
    ….There has scarcely been a day in my life where stuttering hasn’t affected me – it influenced me particularly in my teenage years and early adult life. My dream was that one day I could be a court lawyer and my firm paid for me to go on a course where I learned how to control my stutter. ….
    >Yep, get others to pay for your problem… even when you have good income!!!
    Sound Familiar – a typically smelly, lefty, taker.
    Get everyone else to pay ..and pay.. and pay. Leave my pockets alone.

    https://www.stuff.co.nz/national/politics/111890304/becroft-supports-call-for-mori-childrens-commissioner-pm-plays-down-chances
    …From July 1, new obligations meant Oranga Tamariki, Ministry for Children, would have to partner with Māori and have to ensure power was devolved. “A Māori children’s commissioner could monitor that and make crystal clear if it’s happening or not. I will, in any case,” Becroft said.
    “If we mean business about addressing the ‘C’ word, colonialism, it’ll mean sharing power and ensuring that Māori are in positions of influence where they can bring about change, and they can speak directly to their own culture.”….

    Sooty is correct in the first comment above. Becroft is a total wanker. Full retard level.

    Remember this fuckwit was actually appointed by Notional.
    I was already onto Fruity Farrar being off the rails by 2016 (Brexit, Trump etc)
    He was full of praise for Becroft. I was not so sure and Becroft’s track record was bleeding heart, with a super-duper Christian mask.
    With a couple of links already this would go to moderation so I won’t link.
    Search ‘Kiwiblog Becroft’. 7 May 2016 if interested
    Some comments from that:-
    This first bloke sometimes gets it correct !!
    holysheet
    Sorry but why do we need this position. If Cyfs were doing their job correctly as they should, then having another level of bureaucracy would be a waste of time and taxpayers money.

    but
    Many of the comments are in support of Becroft and have proven to be massively incorrect eg
    Keeping Stock
    Andrew Becroft spoke at a conference my wife and I attended yesterday. He is a fine man, and will be an absolutely outstanding Children’s Commissioner.

    A Notional appointment (Anne Tolley) that was actually contrary to the policies being pursued by Bill English at the time of chipping away at the pity pedlars.

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  8. Remember that bit where Deadpool goes “Maximum effort”? I feel like we need a “Maximum tax evasion” version of that.

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    • Refer to my reply above to Viking, as initially I thought I was replying to you. 🙂
      Keeping Stock’s blog is sort of old, but maybe gives you a way to chew at a bone. Good luck.

      Maybe it was too early a thank you to Ed for edit, though I do figure he is working on it.
      So testing it out again, or maybe I made a click error.
      It is working, though it is a matter of refreshing, or is I have back clicked… to get back to the edited comment, that then needs refreshed.
      Any way it is not being lost. 🙂

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  9. I just do not accept the Children’s Commissioners argument. He is doing the job he has to advocate for children yet he omits the responsibility parents should have. The parents role is to support and nurture their offspring. It is not the general community role to support children other than in cases of genuine hardship or unusual difficulty created by extenuating circumstances.

    The advocacy by the commissioner is very misplaced. That an academic chimed in with support is not surprising. The general taxpayer view will be more realistic.

    If the Children’s Commissioner took a more robust line on parental responsibility, not spending cash on meth, alcohol or cigarettes, The obligation on parents to work, provide housing for offspring, I would be more sympathetic. At present, in my observation, he is on the wrong track.

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    • exactement

      Throwing more money at a problem is the lazy buggers way out.
      Address the core issues like waste of money already supplied.
      Get some f…ing houses built and don’t shaft landlords and rents – which consume so much of income, albeit offset by housing subsidy- may be lower.

      It also shows how out of touch the clown Becroft is because kids get free dentistry to age 18 and free doctor to age 13.
      Hell, 2 x PMs in my lifetime were out to work at 13 – Kirk and Holyoake – not being soft and whiny as Becroft is.
      Muldoon grew up in atual poverty not pretend poverty.

      It underscores another aspect as well – Becroft sat as a judge for years and is just another out of touch (former) jurist.

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