The National Party’s job seeker policy announced today is heartless.

“National is deliberately and heartlessly choosing to make life harder for thousands of people. A National government would literally leave children to go hungry and punish families. It is cruel, ill-thought out, and will endanger the wellbeing of thousands of people. The policy goes against our shared values of caring for each other,” says the Green Party’s social development spokesperson, Ricardo Menéndez March.

“The Green Party’s plan will treat people with respect and dignity ensuring that no matter what, everyone will always have enough to cover life’s essentials. All paid for by a simple and fair tax on the wealthiest few,”

“That is in stark contrast to a National, ACT, NZ First government that will cause misery and hardship for those who need our support the most. Evidence shows that benefit sanctions do not help people into work – and yet National is making the choice to use them, knowing full well it will cause harm.

“The National Party has a long history of dehumanising people who struggle to get by on a day to day basis. Today is just the latest example of how out of touch they are with the reality of daily life for many of the people they say they want to represent.

“When times are tough, people need support – not punitive hoops to jump through right when they’re already struggling. Punishing people who are out of work will not magically create jobs.

“The Green Party’s Income Guarantee will ensure that no matter what happens, your income will never fall below $385 per week, after tax. For couples, our Income Guarantee will be at least $770, and a single parent will always have an income of at least $735.

“Poverty is a political choice – and the Green Party is the only party choosing to end it. Our plan will provide lasting solutions that will guarantee everyone has what they need to live a good life and cover the essentials – even when times are tough,” says Ricardo Menéndez March.

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