Publications 2022

Budget 2022 - CPAG Analysis (May 2022)

Improving the Child Poverty Reduction Framework (23 May 2022) by Susan St John.

Publications 2021

Children can’t live on promises: A 2021 stocktake of implementation of the Welfare Expert Advisory Group’s 2019 recommendations (Dec, 2021) by Caitlin Neuwelt-Kearns, Emeritus Professor Innes Asher, Alan Johnson. As a Word Document.

Australia and NZ tax credits for children. A 5-year comparison: July 2018- July 2023 - Part 2 of the Rethinking Income Support for Children series (Nov, 2021) by Susan St John and Caitlin Neuwelt-Kearns. As a Word document

The First Year of Covid-19: Initial outcomes of our collective care for low-income children in Aotearoa New Zealand (July 2021) by Janet McAllister, Caitlin Neuwelt-Kearns, Leah Bain, Nikki Turner and Donna Wynd. As a Word document

Social Unemployment Insurance: Concerns From Equity And Anti-Poverty Perspectives (June 2021) by Child Poverty Action Group. As a Word document

Where will we live in the future?: Research into the Unmet Housing Needs of People with Disabilities, their Family and Whānau (May 2021) by Colleen Brown and Alan Johnson, with Martine Abel-Williamson and Mike Potter. In partnership with Disability Connect - PDF available from Disability Connect website.

Ensuring Adequate Indexation of Working for Families - Part 1 of the Rethinking Income Support for Children series (May, 2021) by Caitlin Neuwelt-Kearns and Susan St John. As a Word document

Income support in the wake of Covid-19: INTERVIEWS (April 2021) by Louise Humpage & Charlotte Moore (University of Auckland) 

2021 Briefing to the Incoming Minister: Housing (Feb 2021) by Child Poverty Action Group. As a Word document

2021 Briefing to the Incoming Minister: Health (Jan 2021) by Child Poverty Action Group. As a Word document

Publications 2020

Challenging the old normal: Privatisation in Aotearoa’s early childhood care and education sector. by Caitlin Neuwelt-Kearns and Jenny Ritchie. Early Education Journal 66 (2020): 61-68. Peer-reviewed.

2020 Briefing to the Incoming Minister: Income Support (Dec 2020) by Child Poverty Action Group. As a Word document

What happened to ‘welfare overhaul’? A stocktake of implementation of the Welfare Expert Advisory Group’s 2019 recommendations by Caitlin Neuwelt-Kearns and Innes Asher, Child Poverty Action Group (November 2020) As a Word document

Income support in the wake of Covid-19: survey by Louise Humpage (University of Auckland) and Caitlin Neuwelt-Kearns. As a Word document

Living well? Children with disability need far greater income support in Aotearoa by Caitlin Neuwelt-Kearns, Sam Murray (CCS Disability Action), Dr Jin Russell and Jane Lee (September, 2020) Living Well? as a Word document; Living Well? as a large-print Word document

Sheltering our children from COVID-19 fallout: New Zealand must raise incomes for the financially vulnerable instead of cutting their incomes on 1 Oct 2020 as planned”  by Janet McAllister (September, 2020)

Privatisation and early childhood education in Aotearoa New Zealand by Caitlin Neuwelt-Kearns and Dr Jenny Ritchie (July, 2020) (feeds into Challenging the old normal: Privatisation in Aotearoa’s early childhood care and education sector. by Caitlin Neuwelt-Kearns and Jenny Ritchie (peer reviewed). Early Education Journal 66 (2020): 61-68.)

A scenario for changes in child poverty rates from the COVID-19 recession (July 2020)

 Family tax credits: Do children get the support in New Zealand that they would get in Australia? by Caitlin Neuwelt-Kearns and Susan St John (June, 2020)

“The effects of 2020-21 income support changes on After Housing Costs (AHC) incomes for representative households receiving benefits” by Janet McAllister (May 2020)

Briefing on reform of the In-Work Tax Credit by Susan St John (February 2020)

Publications 2019

National’s family incomes support policy:  A new paradigm shift or more of the same? Themed issue: National’s social policy legacy. By Dr Susan St John and Dr Gerard Cotterell,​ New Zealand Sociology 34 (2). (2019) 

Aotearoa, land of the long wide bare cupboard/Food insecurity in New Zealand (November 2019)

2019 CPAG Whakamana Tangata (WEAG report) responses (November 2019)

The experts can all agree: Whakamana Tāngata response from Child Poverty Action Group (Media briefing paper Sept 2019)

Relationship Status and the welfare system in Aotearoa New Zealand (July 2019)

The Accommodation Supplement: The wrong tool to fix the house (May 2019)

Improving child wellbeing? Some relief, but no transformation. 2019 Budget Analysis Summary  (May 2019)

Measuring deprivation in New Zealand regions series by Dan Exeter

Deprivation in the Nelson Marlborough Region (March 2019)

Deprivation in the Otago Region (March 2019)

Deprivation in the Canterbury Region (March 2019)

Deprivation in the Northland Region (March 2019)

Publications 2018

Proceedings Summit 2018: Rethinking the Welfare System for the 21st Century (Nov 2018)

What will it take to have a welfare system fit for families in the 21st century? (September 2018)

Too soon for the tooth fairy: the implications of child poverty for oral health (May 2018)

Publications 2017

The further fraying of the welfare safety net (Dec 17)

Whakapono: End child poverty in Māori whānau: A preliminary report (Dec 2017)

A New Zealand where all children can flourish: BRIEFING PAPER to the incoming Government (Oct 2017)

Proceedings Summit 2017: Beyond Social Investment (Oct 2017)  

A New Zealand where all children can flourish series 2017

 Child Poverty and mental health: a literature review ( May 2017)

Children and the Living Wage (February 2017)

Publications 2016

Barriers to Support: Uptake of the Child Disability Allowance in Otara  (Nov 2016)

Proceedings: Social Security Summit – Investing in children (Sept 2016)

Laybying our Future: The State of Student Hardship in New Zealand (July 2016)

Kathryn’s Story: How the Government spent well over $100,000 and 15 years pursuing a chronically-ill beneficiary mother for a debt she should not have  (June 2016)

A Band Aid Budget CPAG’S analysis of the 2016 Government budget (May 2016)

Publications 2015

Welfare fit for families: Summit Proceedings (Oct 2015)

CPAG's Budget Review 2015: An analysis of the New Zealand Government's 2015 Budget (Aug 2015)

"It shouldn't be this hard": children, poverty and disability(Feb 2015)    

Publications  2014

The complexities of relationship in the welfare system and the consequences for children (Dec 2014)

Our Children, Our Choice: Priorities for Policy Series ( Sept 2014)

CPAG published a series of CPAG policy papers, called Our Children, Our Choice in the lead up to the 2014 election with recommendations for policy change to alleviate child poverty.

Part 1: Child Health & Poverty

Part 2: Early Childhood Care and Education, and Child Poverty

Part 3: Compulsory schooling and child poverty

Part 4: Housing market change and their impact on children

Part 5: Adequate incomes to address child poverty 

Benefit Sanctions

Benefit sanctions and children: an urgent need for greater clarity (Sept 2014)

CPAG's third monitoring report says a lack of data on benefit sanctions means there is no way of knowing whether welfare reform is helping or harming children.

Benefit Sanctions: Children not seen - not heard ( June 2014)

CPAG's second monitoring report on benefit sanctions says the welfare of children affected by sanctions remains a deep concern. 

Benefit Sanctions: creating an invisible underclass of children? ( Oct 2013)


Survey on New Zealanders' Attitudes to Child Poverty (July 2014)

 Child Poverty Action Group commissioned MMResearch, in association with Research Now to conduct an online survey sampling 1013 members of the New Zealand public in order to more fully understand people's attitudes and perceptions about child poverty.  The survey was designed to be representative of the New Zealand public aged 18 years and over.  The results have been post weighted by region, gender and age. 

The revolving door - student transience in Auckland schools (May 2014)

CPAG's latest research shows transience is a significant issue for low decile Auckland schools.  One principal referred to his school as having "a revolving door".

Child Abuse & Poverty: What are the links? (2013)

Report 1: Child Abuse: What role does poverty play? (June 2013)

Report 2: Child Abuse: An analysis of Child, Youth & Family data (July 2013)


CPAG's Budget Review 2013: An analysis of the New Zealand Government's 2013 Budget 

Excerpt: The 2013 Budget is the present National Government’s fifth budget and comes at a time when New Zealand is emerging from the worst economic recession since the 1930’s. This recession has tended to frame not only this and preceding budgets but the whole fiscal stance of the Government. The Minister of Finance Bill English has consistently identified his desire to return the Government’s finances back to surplus by 2015 and this budget more or less fulfils this ambition for him.


Empty Food Baskets: Food Poverty in Whangarei ( March 2012)

The results of this research show a frightening picture for too many children in Whangarei. In a country that has long been a major food producer it is scandalous that so many report going without food in order to make ends meet. The fact that this is the experience of so many New Zealand children makes the scandal even worse.


Left further Behind: how policies fail the poorest children in New Zealand (2011)

Left Further Behind: how policies fail the poorest children in New Zealand, is an urgent call for policy changes that provide solutions to child poverty.  this is CPAG's flagship publication and well worth reading.


Hunger for Learning: nutritional barriers to children's education (2011)

In this latest research by Donna Wynd, we look at how too many children start their day without food. This lack of food at the start of the day affects children at the start of the day and is a major barrier to their learning, and social progress and development.


What Work Counts? Work incentives and sole parent families (2010)

Child Poverty Action Group (CPAG) is pleased to publish this monograph ‘What work counts? Work incentives and sole parent families’. Its findings raise important policy issues for New Zealand society.


Left Behind: How social and income inequalities damage New Zealand children (2008)

Edited by Dr Susan St John and Donna Wynd, and written by a range of experts this report outlines how increasing inequalities are harmful to children and society at large - and what to do about it. Download the report here, or write to to request a copy (~180pages).


Child poverty and family incomes policy in New Zealand (2006)

A chapter written by Dr Susan St John, CPAG family incomes spokesperson, in the Otago University Press publication "Health inequalities and need in Aotearoa New Zealand".


Hard to swallow: Foodbank use in New Zealand (2005)

This Child Poverty Action Group report presents a picture of widespread food insecurity in our food-producing nation. However the report says an adequate, nutritious diet can reverse most of the harm this causes to children's health and development. It recommends at the very least, the introduction of quality breakfast programmes in decile one to three schools.


Workfare: Not fair for kids? (2005)

Mike O'Brien reviews compulsory work policies and their effects on children.


Cut price kids (2004)

In CPAG's incomes monograph Susan St John and David Craig ask whether the 'Working for Families' package works for children.


Room for improvement: Current New Zealand housing policies and their implications for our children (2003)

In-depth analysis of the background and consequences of the 1990s housing reforms for New Zealand children.


Our children: The priority for policy (2nd edition, 2003)

The first official publication of the Child Poverty Action Group, Our Children: The Priority for Policy, was published in early 2001. This new edition updates Our Children and reflects on the events and progress of the intervening two years.  Read the speeches from the launch here.


The irony of NCEA: How compulsory exam fees prevent the achievement of students from poor families (2003)

The findings of in-depth interviews with 11 low decile schools about the impact NCEA exam fees had on their students. While there was unanimous support amongst schools for the NCEA as a national qualification, the report concludes that many students in the poorest areas were disadvantaged and discouraged from completing the cornerstone qualification because of the high levels of fees.


A study of transience in South Auckland primary schools (2003)

A report prepared by housing expert Alan Johnson, on the scale of transience in South Auckland, one of the poorest areas of New Zealand.The results of the survey suggest that in South Auckland the equivalent to a middle sized New Zealand primary school shifts every week of the school year. This impacts on almost a third of all low decile school children.

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