If they stopped spending money on tattoos they just might cope



It is Christmas time.

How do I know? A long line of stories in the media about ‘poor’ people who don’t know if they can afford a present for their kid/s. Usually sporting a plethora of tattoos, sitting in a room filled with loads of useless expensive junk of cuddling yet another unaffordable sprog.

Now you might think I am heartless…and in many respects I am, but I can’t stand these stories. If you can’t afford a present for your 9 year old then you certainly can’t afford to be scribbling all over your body or dropping another sprog.

Jaz Nicol was wondering how she was going to buy her 9-year-old daughter a present for Christmas.

That was until she received a food parcel with groceries worth $100 from charitable trust Families for Families, in conjunction with the Salvation Army.

The food parcel was much needed, Nicol said. 

“We haven’t even started our Christmas shopping yet because we haven’t been able to afford it.

“This means we’ve got extra money to put to that because we don’t have to spend that money on groceries.”

Nicol, 29, said it had been a struggle to make ends meet since the earthquakes, especially as house rents continued to climb.

She was not insured.

“We pretty much lost more or less everything and had to restart [after the February 2011 earthquake].”

Nicol has had to move house six times in the past three years, often because the landlord needed the property for a family member.

Before the quake, she was paying $280 a week rent. Now, her rent is $400 a week.

In the hope that a cheaper rental will come on to the market, she and partner Leigh Galey, 33, have not unpacked completely since moving to their Phillipstown house three months ago.

The couple have a new baby and with Galey bringing home $600 a week on average, Nicol said not a lot was left after paying the rent. They typically spent about $180 a week on groceries.

She had even sought help from a budget adviser at the Salvation Army.

Yeah there was na earthquake..they lost everything…and they weren’t insured…none of which is our fault.

Contraception is free, why when you can;t afford a Christmas present for your kid are you bringing another mouth into a cash strapped household?

Boo-hoo, go cry elsewhere.

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As much at home writing editorials as being the subject of them, Cam has won awards, including the Canon Media Award for his work on the Len Brown/Bevan Chuang story. When he’s not creating the news, he tends to be in it, with protagonists using the courts, media and social media to deliver financial as well as death threats.

They say that news is something that someone, somewhere, wants kept quiet. Cam Slater doesn’t do quiet and, as a result, he is a polarising, controversial but highly effective journalist who takes no prisoners.

He is fearless in his pursuit of a story.

Love him or loathe him, you can’t ignore him.

To read Cam’s previous articles click on his name in blue.