A New Zealand where all children can flourish: Briefing to incoming ministers

Child Poverty Action Group (CPAG) says that with a new minister for Child Poverty Reduction, there is hope for measurable improvement in the lives of affected children in Aotearoa-New Zealand.

It is highly significant that Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has taken this new role; children’s well-being will be, at last, right at the heart of all policy.

We can expect to see some immediate improvements to income support through Working for Families, as Labour has indicated in an agreement with the Green Party. Increases in the minimum wage have also been heralded. Housing, education and health policy too will now be viewed through a much more child well-being focused lens.

CPAG is looking forward to seeing an agreement by Labour, NZ First and the Green party on child poverty measurements and regular reporting on the Government’s progress in reducing child poverty and its distressing manifestations.

CPAG’s priority for the new Government is the introduction of wide ranging policy changes recommended in a policy priorities briefing paper entitled “A New Zealand where all Children can Flourish”.

These proposed policies, compiled and endorsed by experts in health, education, housing, incomes and social security, would improve outcomes for all children.

We would encourage also, introducing a range of indicators and goals, such as the reduction of child hospital admissions for preventable diseases by half, from 40,000 (yearly) to 20,000 by 2022. These indicators would provide evidence of improvements in the wellbeing of all children.

If implemented, these policies would ensure all children and their parents are able to access the necessary resources, supports and services that they so desperately need. Aotearoa-New Zealand would once again become ‘a great place to bring up children’, a country where all children can flourish.

For more information download the paper here.