'Significant, enduring' child poverty in New Zealand according to Child Poverty Monitor

New Zealand has a goal to halve poverty by 2030.
123rf

New Zealand has a goal to halve poverty by 2030.

New Zealand child poverty has hit a "crisis" point according to Auckland City Mission CEO Chris Farrelly and we "need to take action". 

New Zealand's child poverty rates aren't greatly improving but we are starting to "wake up to the serious problem", results from the 2016 Child Poverty Monitor show.

The monitor, released on Tuesday morning, shows 90,000 kids are living in severe poverty.

Fourteen per cent of children are living in material hardship where they are living without seven or more necessary items for their wellbeing and 28 per cent of children are living in low income homes, up from 14 per cent in 1982. 

READ MORE: 
* This is how you fix child poverty in NZ
NZ comes under UN scrutiny over its treatment of children
UN scorecard on Child Rights for NZ presents challenge to address child poverty
Prime Minister John Key on the wrong side of the child poverty debate

"We do have a crisis. It's not a catastrophe where we're going to be completely swamped by it and we can do this if we set ourselves targets," Farrelly said.

He said we are on a journey to end child poverty in New Zealand, not manage it.

Creating a plan to reduce the number of children in poverty in New Zealand must be a priority if we are going to prevent a third generation of children in poverty, Children's Commissioner Judge Andrew Becroft said.

"This is not the New Zealand I grew up in nor is it the New Zealand most of us want. The cold reality today is that between 85,000 to 90,000 children under 18 years old at least are in severe and profound and deep poverty," Becroft said.

"It's a situation that has been around for 20 years. This Child Poverty Monitor says today it has got no worse but it has not got significantly better.

Ad Feedback

"I accept it's not the sort of abject poverty you see on the banks of the Ganges River - but it's not what we want for our children. It is significant, enduring and seriously affects a child's ability to grow."

Child poverty has been identified by New Zealanders in recent opinion polls as one of the most significant issues facing our country.

"New Zealanders are starting to wake up to the serious problem we face. We are in real danger of creating pockets of a third generation of ingrained poverty - which seriously impacts children's health, ability to learn and contribute to society."

New Zealand has a goal to halve all poverty by 2030.  

"To attain this goal within the next 14 years, we need a plan to reduce child poverty. It must be a government led plan all New Zealanders can work towards. It should involve business, community and non-government groups." 

Becroft's concern is that we are set to have another winter with children living in cars and marae having to take people in.

"Our monitor shows that New Zealand's lowest income earners are spending an average of 50 per cent of their income on housing.

"As the Auckland City Mission well knows, this means families are forced to line up for food banks and use emergency accommodation."

New Zealand Child and Youth Epidemiology Service director Dr Jean Simpson said living in poverty has serious implications for a child's health, well-being and life outcomes.

She said children living in the lowest income households were more likely to be living in crowded, damp and mouldy spaces, which can lead to illness.

"Research tells us that children living in the most disadvantaged communities are about 18 times more likely to miss out a visit to the GP when they are unwell due to a lack of transport to get there than those in the least disadvantaged communities.

"Reducing the number of young children living in poverty is critical to improving the health of the whole population," Simpson said.

BY THE NUMBERS 

* Fourteen per cent of children are living in material hardship where they are living without seven or more necessary items for their wellbeing.   

* Twenty-eight per cent of children are living in low income homes. 

* More than eight per cent of children are in severe poverty, experiencing material hardship and living in a low income household. 

* In 1982 the percentage of children in families experiencing income poverty was 14 per cent, compared to 28 per cent now.

 

 - Stuff

Comments

Ad Feedback
special offers
Auckland

'That was her dream, to provide a haven'

Salon co-owner Greg Carter with the salon's manager and hairdresser Salina-Pearl Nigro.

A Greenhithe resident's legacy lives on in her salon with a difference.

Viola player finalist a first

University of Auckland honours students and viola player, Julie Park said she's not afraid to try new things.

Julie Park explains her journey as the first viola player to make finalist at a well-known concerto competition.

Mad Butcher: Let's celebrate

Shaun Johnson makes a break during the match against Sydney Roosters.

Some fantastic news to celebrate.

Fire alarm warns homeowners

Breathing apparatus wearing firefighters accounted for all occupants as unharmed in the smoke-filled home.

Mairangi Bay homeowners on Auckland's North Shore came home to a blaring alarm and smoke-filled house.

Wellington

From 'Fats' to fighting fit video

Fats Moke is a big man with a gang history who has worked with Dr Tom Mulholland to get his diabetes under control.

After a shock diagnosis, former mobster 'Fats' Moke is fighting back against losing his legs.

'PC gone haywire' video

The Poplar Ave interchange withthe expressway, dark, running along the centre, between the Poplar Ave roundabout and the ...

Backlash as proposed Maori street names for sections of old Kapiti SH1 are deemed "unpronounceable".

Wild weather hits

Rain

Strong winds hammer lower North Island causing power cuts, flooding and damage.

'Transience' hurting Porirua's kids

A quarter of Porirua's children live in overcrowded homes, and they are twice as likely to switch schools two or more ...

School switching leaving some Porirua kids at "the end of the tail of underachievement."

Canterbury

Dairy owner takes on robbers video

Sujan Burra fought back as two men robbed a Woolson dairy of snacks on Saturday night.

Sujan Burra has been robbed since day one. This time, he was ready with a bat.

Body pulled from river

The Buller Gorge (file shot).

Police have recovered a vehicle along with a man's body from the Buller River on the West Coast.

First snow dump for skifields

The first heavy snowfall has arrived at several southern ski fields, including Cardrona.

South Island slopes enjoy first heavy snowfall of the season thanks to Sunday's storm.

Afternoon party shut down video

At least five police cars and a dozen officers are at the scene.

Police shut down Dunedin student party after calls about noise and "people vomiting".

Waikato

Architectural wonders revealed

The new law and management building at Waikato University was designed by Opus Architecture.

A lot of well known Waikato and Bay of Plenty buildings - and spaces - have earned accolades.

It's our turn to fix this

A medical school backed by Waikato Hospital, pictured, and Waikato University  seeks to train GPs to fill a critical ...

OPINION: The old boys have failed to fix New Zealand's doctor shortage, now it's our turn.

Join the fight for our med school

Waikato University vice-chancellor Professor Neil Quigley and Waikato District Health Board chief executive Dr Nigel Murray.

A proposed medical school in the Waikato has the Government interested.

Ref raids accounts

050711 NEWS. Robert Charles/Taranaki Daily News. Cheque/ cheque book. Money. Bank.

Colleagues blew the whistle on referee who swiped $13K and a video camera.

Taranaki

Women walk the world at Pukekura Park

Nearly 100 women took part in the  Women Walk the World 2017 which preceded the Associated Country Women of the World's ...

The walk precedes the Associated Country Women of the World's South Pacific Conference.

Bringing Beau home

Beau St George, his fiancee Herminie Gouard and their daughter, Joan. Beau tragically lost his life following a car ...

Nearly $30,000 has been raised to help bring Kiwi dad's body home after tragic crash in France.

Man stabbed in Normanby

Two police units were at the scene.

The alleged offender was being held down by the victim.

Costly second half errors for Team Taranaki

Team Taranaki's Domenico Squatriti was red carded against Western Suburbs in their Central League match.

Second loss hurts Team Taranaki.

Manawatu

A look inside the stricken gorge video

Two slips are about 2 kilometres apart and it will take weeks for the road through the Manawatu Gorge to reopen.

The road through the Manawatu Gorge will be closed for weeks - and here's why.

Cyber act in action

The Harmful Digitial Communications Act was passed in July 2015.

Act helps as more than 20 people prosecuted for posting harmful content online.

Ram-raid attempt to steal cigarettes

The Feilding BP on Kimbolton Rd was ram-raided.

A stolen ute was used to ram into a BP station in an attempt to steal cigarettes.

NZDF civilians take strike action

Civilian employees of NZDF are on strike about pay.

Union accuses the Defence Force of intimidation after strike action.

Nelson

Not a house, it's a croquet shelter

Athol Turner has a few home comforts at the Hinemoa Croquet Club shelter, including coffee and a biography of Alec Guiness.

As the Nelson City Council looks to implement a new law banning sleeping in the city we meet a man who has made a croquet club his home.

Housing crisis help?

David Barnes, right, with his son Samuel Barnes who needs medical care, pictured with the dwelling David built for him ...

A Nelson man built a home on his property for his mentally-ill son. Could this solve our housing issues?

Guilty of murder

Philip Quayle died after being attacked on a street in Cairns, Australia, about 100 metres from home.

A man who choked a Nelson man to death during a random street attack in Cairns has been found guilty of murder.

Taking a leaf out of the future video

Nelson Mail Journalist Tim O'Connell with the Nissan Leaf electric vehicle(EV) that the Nelson Mail has had on loan from ...

Tim O'Connell shares the thrills, trials and tribulations of driving an electric vehicle.

Marlborough

City Hotel site snapped up

Rob Anderson has sold the City Hotel site on High St in Blenheim, three years after its demolition and subsequent ...

Empty lot used as public space in central Blenheim purchased by Marlborough investor.

Landing ... on SH1

Air Kaikoura Aero Club, pictured with its training plane near Mt Fyffe, supplied a service between Kaikoura and Clarence.

Cars can't use this part of State Highway 1, but Kaikoura aero club wants to use it for planes.

Tourism spend strong, considering

Destination Marlborough general manager Tracy Johnston says the latest figures from the Ministry of Business, Innovation ...

International, domestic tourism spend holds up in post-quake market.

Stormy conflict finally settled

Kingwell Drive resident Pauline Davis feeds fish and eels in Murphy's Creek.

Multimillion-dollar stormwater project gets green light after four-year battle.

South Canterbury

'Great' fun for all at colour run video

Ziah Tatuava, 6, of Waimate is having a roaring good time at the second-annual Colour Me Fun Run in Timaru on Sunday.

Colourful 'old ladies' and a family of 'dalmatians' took part in Timaru's annual Colour Me Fun Run on Sunday.

Scooter bros 'buzzing'

Kahurangi, left, giving his brother Makaia a pep talk before he competed on Saturday.

Timaru's scooting brothers have 'incredible' at the Australian Scooter Championships in Melbourne.

Museum social push

The South Canterbury Museum is looking to expand its social media reach beyond Facebook, using Instagram and YouTube, ...

The South Canterbury Museum could soon be using Instagram and YouTube to expand its social media reach.

Quad bike crash a 'terrible tragedy'

The crash happened at the intersection of Hakataramea Highway and Shearers Hill Road, southeast of Waimate.

 Police are looking into a quad bike crash which claimed the life of a man in South Canterbury.

Southland

Volunteer firefighters getting medical training

Edendale Firefighters Brendon Cameron, Shane Elliott, Richard Hart, Scottie Cameron, Brian Coyle, Rudi Verplancke and ...

Some Southland volunteer fire brigades are taking on extra medical training to provide a service to fill a need within their community.

Visitor tax unlikely

Finance Minister Steven Joyce and Clutha Southland MP Todd Barclay in Queenstown.

Finance Minister says more money does need to be spent on tourism infrastructure.

Pros and cons of reform

Southland Regional Development Strategy governance group chair Tom Campbell.

Experts say the effect of the changes to immigration reform are uncertain at this stage, with both positives and negatives to come out of the new policy.

Walking for enjoyment

Recreational walking gives June Wilson, left, and Ngaire Evans immense pleasure.

Joining walking groups is good for exercise and making friends, June Wilson says.

Ad Feedback