Ardern makes good on child poverty promise, but a long road lies ahead

Posted by on May 20, 2021 1:47 am
Categories: Global Stories

Analysis: the PM has spent big on tackling social issues, but it will still take New Zealand only halfway to meeting her child poverty goal

When she came to power, the prime minister, Jacinda Ardern, grabbed international headlines for her commitments to national wellbeing and solving social issues such as child poverty, homelessness and the mental health crisis. Until now, progress on many of those hallmark issues has been plodding – or at times non-existent – making critics sceptical of whether the rhetoric on wellbeing had lined up with reality. The budget will be welcomed by progressives, as evidence the government is following through on assistance for the country’s most vulnerable.

A multibillion-dollar income boost for impoverished families was a headline item in the country’s new budget, announced on Thursday. Ardern’s government looked to harness the momentum of a better-than-expected Covid recovery to spend big on social problems.

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