Welfare measures rise despite fiscal hardship

National campaigned on a plan to build our brighter future for New Zealand families at the last election.

It is great that despite tough economic times, we have been able to provide better and more targeted support for our families.

We have kept paid parental leave at 14 weeks and adjusted Working for Families payments by another 5% recently, which means higher payments for eligible families.

We are doing all we can to help support new parents.

We have fully funded PlunketLine, a critical advice service, which is now available 24 hours a day, seven days a week. We are making sure that new mums and their babies are seen by a WellChild health provider at least five times, free of charge.

This would help around 18,000 new mums in need, and we are proud that we are able to provide this kind of assistance.

Quality education

It is also really important that our children have access to high-quality education from an early age. Our target is to ensure that at least 98% of our children attend some form of Early Childhood Education (ECE) before they start school. We are spending more than ever before on ECE, and we are already seeing an increase in participation rates.

Our support for education continues through all stages of your children’s schooling.

National Standards are now firmly bedded in at primary and intermediate level, ensuring that your children reach their potential in reading, writing, and mathematics.

At secondary level, we have funded more vocational options for young New Zealanders, through the ‘Youth Guarantee Scheme’.

We are increasing the quality of our tertiary education qualifications to make sure that our children receive world-class higher-level study.

Raising a family is one of the most rewarding jobs in the world.

Enhanced support

But we know it is not always easy. As a government, we are proud to be able to say that we have maintained, and in some areas increased, the level of support that we put around our families with young children.

We are making sure that the next generation is given every chance to succeed, and to have a brighter future.

John Key is Prime Minister of New Zealand. The above article is exclusive to Indian Newslink ©

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