Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Lindsay Mitchell: CPAG back in court - again

The Child Poverty Action Group (CPAG) is about to return to court for the third time arguing that the In Work Tax Credit should go to beneficiary families. The group has an opinion piece in today's DomPost: 
New Zealand continues to grapple with a poor track record for child poverty and particularly the rising inequality affecting our poorest children. More

My response:

Dear Editor

An opinion piece from the Child Poverty Action Group (Dominion Post, May 28) is prefaced with a statement that the group is back in court this week trying to get Working for Families extended to those getting benefits. Children in beneficiary families do receive Family Tax Credits, part of the WFF package. What they don't get is the In Work Tax Credit (IWTC) specifically for parents who work.

The IWTC was created by the last Labour government which believed the best way out of poverty, including for children, was through paid work. It reflected the extra costs of going to work and the often negligible gap between income from low-paid work and income from a benefit.

Research from the OECD (whose experts assisted the government at the last defence of this policy) has shown that reducing child poverty simply by lifting benefit payments increases the number of workless homes. In short, paying the IWTC to children in benefit homes will lift their income in the immediate future but won't eliminate the source of their ongoing poverty - parental unemployment - in the long run. That's why the Human Rights Tribunal ruled,"...the discrimination caused by the exclusion of beneficiaries from the In Work Tax Credit is demonstrably justified."

CPAG refuse to accept this and continue to throw good money after bad fighting the decision. It could probably be better spent on practical measures to reduce hardship amongst poor children.


Anonymous said...

The easiest thing in the world is to be "compassionate" with other people's money.

Leftists evaluate social and economic policy on the basis of whether it confers that warm glow, maximises opportunities to engage in moral preening, and affords them the opportunity to pat themselves on the back every morning for "'saving' the [insert preferred 'victim' group] ..."

The rest of us evaluate social and economic policy first and foremost by asking the question: "Does it work?"

Trapping people on welfare by promising them ever-increasing amounts of OTHER PEOPLE'S MONEY is compassionate to NOBODY: not the victims of state-sponsored theft forced to pay for these worthless initiatives; and not those thus incentivised to lay back in the welfare hammock!

Brother Paul said...

@Anonymous forgot the main thing leftists evaluate – "will this gain us more votes?". Fortunately, some of us dependent on the Government for their income (I'm on a pension) know how to think.

Anonymous said...

It is amuses me that in many forums, stupid and ill educated children get to air their fantasies with the utmost gravity. The comments posted in this site gives me heart that not all of the population is bovine.
Regrettably, the opinions expressed here by evidently well educated and literate people will never be expressed in the mainstream. Why why is that do you think?

charles said...

Lindsay has worked tirelessly as a member of the Libertarianz party for many years to point out the disgrace that our social welfare system really is. So far it has been tilting at windmills. We are now seeing a hardening of attitude by the productive against the worthless in our society driven in no small part by the net. The exuberant anarchy of the net and its postings give me hope.