Labour’s child poverty numbers don’t add up, and a little girl waits

Steve Joyce raises a very good point about the instant claims of rescuing children from poverty:

Labour needs to come clean on exactly how many additional children will be lifted out of poverty with their Families Package, National Party Finance Spokesperson Steven Joyce says.

“Grant Robertson proudly announced yesterday in the Budget Policy Statement that 39,000 more children would be lifted out of poverty than through the previous Government’s package,” Mr Joyce says.

“Yet the independent disclosure statement and Regulatory Impact Statement provided by Government Departments clearly states that only 12,000 more children will be lifted out of poverty through this package.

“This is a concerning difference.

“Asked to explain the discrepancy in Parliament today, the Government simply said that different officials have different views.

“And yet the Regulatory Impact Statement is signed off jointly by Inland Revenue, MSD and Treasury. These are the relevant officials for this package. This is their official view.

“The Government owes the public an explanation.

They trumpeted their numbers loudly yesterday but the numbers in the RIS contradict them.

“Why did they provide their number and why are officials contradicting them?

What is also interesting is changing the method of calculation, moving from 60% of median income to 50%. Labour held the government to account with one measure and now appears to be using a different measure.

But here is another thing the government needs to answer. If, as they claim, they have dramatically improved the lives of children in poverty, with a Grant Robertson speech in parliament and the application of some money coming on stream later on, then why have they left just as many children in poverty?

It’s like there were two kids drowning at the beach and the lifesavers rocked up and saved just one of them. The other is left to drown. That is what Labour has done.

What I’d want to know is who decided and how was it decided to draw an arbitrary line where some kids got left behind by Labour’s new package. Surely, if it was just a matter of applying more money they could have chosen not to borrow $500m to put into the super fund and instead used that to save even more kids.

I think we are seeing the cruel side of Labour, abandoning some children so they can “save” them later. Using children for political gain is low rent, but that is what Labour have done.

No wonder KidsCan is needed, to save those Labour can’t be bothered saving.

Meanwhile, a little girl waits.




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