Wednesday, 27 July 2016

A Quiet Revolution

Good News Day

It's not very often you see press releases like the one below.  We suggest a good dose of savouring the moment might be in order.

5,000 More People Independent of Benefits

Thursday, 21 July 2016, 10:19 am
Press Release: New Zealand Government

Hon Jo Goodhew
Acting Minister for Social Development 21 July 2016

Acting Social Development Minister Jo Goodhew says the number of people receiving a main benefit has continued to fall year on year, with the latest figures the lowest for any June quarter since 2008. “The number of people receiving a main benefit has fallen by 5,172 (or 1.8 per cent) in the last 12 months, with those on Sole Parent Support continuing to drive the strong downward trend,” Mrs Goodhew says.  [Emphasis, ours]

“This is the first quarter since the $790 million Child Hardship Package came into effect, raising benefit rates by $25 a week after tax for those with dependent children, and increasing obligations for sole parents.  [Emphasis, ours]   “Sole Parents have shown they are willing and able to move into independence, with a reduction of 965 in the last quarter, or 3,818 in the last year in the numbers receiving Sole Parent Support.

“All regions saw a fall in this benefit type compared to June 2015, with the strongest reductions in Bay of Plenty, down 9.4 per cent, and Auckland, down 7.3 per cent.  “It’s also promising to see a 2.1 per cent reduction in the number of Jobseekers with health conditions and disabilities in the last 12 months, as we find better ways to remove the barriers they face to employment.

“Last week Disability Issues Minister Nicky Wagner launched EmployAbility, an extension of the pilot Project 300, which saw 584 people with health conditions and disabilities supported into work. “Funding in Budgets 2015 and 2016 also means that all sole parents and people with medical conditions have access to intensive, work-focused case management.

“Employment is about more than just earning a living and we are determined to support more families into work so they can thrive,” Mrs Goodhew says.
This press release shows what can happen when a government stops the "hand out" mentality of state welfare, and replaces it with focused "hand up" policies, with appropriate attending rules and regulations.  The two key messages welfare agencies have been giving and applying have been, firstly, "You have to get a job" and, secondly, "We are here to assist you in "winning" that job offer."

The impact upon former beneficiary homes will be significant, we believe.  A cluster of positive ramifications will emerge, from increased self-respect to a far more scrupulous and careful approach to money management.  While enslaved to the dole, beneficiaries generally see only one way ahead--"I would be better if the benefit was increased".  Once in work, the focus changes to "what can I do to earn more".  The journey from servile dependency to self-respect and independence can be that short.  But the moral distance travelled is inter-galactic.

The hard Green/Left along with the brain dead amongst some of our pip squeak political parties see this as a bad thing.  Far, far better according to their calculus to have adults on a lifetime of state welfare dependency.  It's called buying votes: using tax payer's hard earned money, to bribe themselves into positions of political power.

Let's hope the opposite will be the case.  Let's hope the vast majority of beneficiaries who are now in work blossom under the freedom they are enjoying and the pride that comes from contributing and being able to make one's own way--and vote accordingly.

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