Thursday, April 8, 2010

Beneficiaries and Workers Unite Against This Rotten Government

 Unite Waitemata Branch held a protest outside Paula Bennett’s office, Saturday 11 am, 27 March

429 Great North Rd, Henderson, against the  National Government's attacks upon beneficiaries.

The National Government plans to force all single mothers into part time work, once their children are six. Those on Unemployment benefit who fail work tests will have their benefits halved or stopped. Sickness benefits are to be re-assessed and hardship grants are to be tightened. All benefits are to be stopped after one year and must be re applied for.
And  even before these measures officially come about, National has already been forcing people off the  Invalids Benefit and onto Sickness Benefits-where they lose $49 per week!

These measures show a “disturbing lack of empathy” towards those who cannot work or who can only work part time while on a benefit” (Child Poverty Action Group). It is simply not appropriate for all mothers on the DPB to be forced into outside work when their child reaches a particular age. Mothering is work, and must be fully supported by society. Family needs vary and it must be the mother’s decision when she undertakes paid work.

The attacks upon benefits are part of the government’s agenda make its capitalist friends rich at our expense. In a time of rising unemployment it is absurd to bring in measures that force beneficiaries to work in order to qualify for a benefit. It’s work for the dole by another name.

The government is trying to to whip up sexist, racist, beneficiary -bashing sentiments; to get support for its greedy and heartless attacks upon our livelihoods. It tries to divide the “deserving” poor-eg widows, against the “undeserving” eg single mothers.

It is also trying to divide non beneficiaries (those who rely on paid work as their main income) against beneficiaries (those whose main source of income is a benefit). In fact our interests are the same: we all need living incomes-whether in the form of wages, benefits, accommodation supplements; student allowances, pensions, family support etc or any combination of these.

In today’s economy many workers rely on state support at times, and many beneficiaries also do paid work. When benefits rise, so do wages.

Workers and Beneficiaries Unite for a Living Income for All! Raise the Minimum Wage to at least $15 per hour! Raise all Benefits to a living income! Say no to punitive Benefit Threats and Cuts! End Child poverty NOW! Say No to youth rates!

We won’t pay for their crisis! Make the bosses pay! I

Issued by the acting President of the Waitemata Branch of Unite!

Tel:  (Secretary) 8369104 txt: (President)  021 2166937

Unite! is a community union for low paid workers, students and beneficiaries

If you want to take part of  more actions against these cuts get in touch!
Join Unite Waitemata Branch!

1 comment:

Secretary said...

One point that hasn't been raised about (quote) "The National Government plans to force all single mothers into part time work, once their children are six".
I speak from experience here of 20 years raising boys, as a married parent and later as a widowed sole parent.
**FACT: There is a huge difference between raising children in a supportive marriage and raising children alone. Children of sole parents do not receive the same level of social protection that children in a 2 parent househiold do.
This is a direct effect of the sort of personal social devaluation that occurrs when punitive changes to the benefit system are proposed a (traditional) manner that implies that sole parents are community leaches, by those in power. One result is that they are more likely to be the target of employer prejuduce and workplace bullying because of the perception that they have a greater than nomal level personal responsibilities outside of the workplace and will be a less reliable worker as a result, therefore be seen to be of less value as a worker their employers.
Because of the level of social prejudice and hysteria that sole parents have to deal with they are seen as "soft" targets for ripoffs, such as marriage and relationship fraud, unprovoked assult or villification, negative neighbourhood serveillence, common crimes such as burgulary, stalking, fraud, and general shakedowns, often by those people who see themselves as having a social or economic power advantage, such as landlords, service providers, neighbours etc.
Reality is their children are often tempting targets for school bullies and gang activity, and more importantly pedophiles. In counselling, counsellers often respond to this by blaming their client and asking the client, if they are a sole parent and appear to be experiencing an above average amount of negative abovementioned experiences when compared to other counselling clients.
A common response by some counsellers is to ask the client to reflect on what they are doing to attract this type of attention. This is often presented in a way that implies that they are in some way responsible for being the target of these people. It is often made very difficult for a sole parent to deal with or complain about this treatment due to a socially orchestrated lack of reasonable credibility and empathy on the part of those who should morrally do better.
At an aproximate cost of over $150.00 per session, many sole parents faced with these issues are forced to seek low cost or free counselling, which is often not independant in it's motives, beibnng restricted to providing counselling only for the special interests of the counselling service funding provider. This could mean for example, in a family violence provider situation the counseller being restricted to adhereing to an "abuse investigation" model targetting parental abuse only, or in a stress treatment, for drug abuse issues only.
The abovementioned provision structure and the culture of practice for counsellers presents the difficulties in a way that creates assumptions about individual sole parents seeking help, and the disproportionate amount of personal responsibility placed on those vulnerable to this type of prejudice in action. This lack of accouuntability attracts pedophiles to target children in sole parent families rather than if there are 2 parents and therefore halving their chances of being caught, or if caught lessens the likelhood that they will be held accountable.
Sole parents need a much higher level of community social support to hold down paid employment than working mothers in 2 parent families. How is this issue going to be addressed by the National Government? Or is it going to be ignored? It has been so far.

Comment posted by one of our members who is a single parent.