Labour: paid work for young unemployed

In his speech to the Labour conference today announced a policy that will give six months paid community for young unemployed people.

Factsheet: Ready for Work

Labour has a plan to give young people opportunity and hope. Our vision is that all young people who are able, will be in work, training or education, including through Ready for Work.


Labour will:

  • give unemployed young people a job for six months doing work of public value, so they can gain work experience and avoid long-term unemployment.

Under Labour’s Ready for Work policy, all young people who have been on the Jobseeker’s Allowance in the Work Ready category for six months will be offered full-time employment for six months on environmental and community projects.

Ready for Work jobs will pay at least the minimum wage. Mentors employed by WINZ will assist in their training and work preparedness. This job experience will allow young people to make a valuable contribution to their community and earn an income, as well as fostering a work ethic and making them more attractive to employers.

Participants will be employed to do much needed environmental and community work that would not otherwise be carried out. It is anticipated many will work on Department of Conservation projects. DoC is struggling to meet its goals in the face of funding and staffing cuts. The area of land where pests are being controlled is falling and only 56% of tracks are maintained up to DoC standards. Councils and NGOs, too, have many important environmental and community projects that they would like to do but cannot do because the labour cost is prohibitive, such as riparian planting. WINZ will work with these groups to identify projects that meet these criteria.

With an estimated 10,000 participants per year, Ready for Work will cost $60m a year. This investment will result in large savings to the government and society over time. Labour will not abandon our young people, as National has.

The key will be finding or creating enough meaningful positions.

David Farrar disputes this costing. “That’s $15.25 an hour for 40 hours for 26 weeks which is $15,860 per person. At $15,860 per person and 10,000 participants that would be $158 million not $60 million” – http://www.kiwiblog.co.nz/2016/11/dodgy_sums_from_labour.html

Updated “Even if you take account of the current benefit payments of $156 a week, that still leaves a additional cost of around $120 million a year – before any admin costs.”

This might need clarifying.

Labour will get them back working and give them hope for the future.

Young people are being been left behind by National. 74,000 are not in employment, education or training. There are now 12,000 more people aged under 24 who are unemployed than there were eight years ago.

A young person who is not in employment, education or training is more likely to be unemployed for long periods in later life and more likely to have a lower income in the future. The lifetime cost to New Zealand as a whole of a young person being not in employment, education, or training is over $200,000 from lost productivity and income, higher benefit costs and low tax revenue.

On top of this, young people who become detached from the workforce are more likely to be involved in crime and have poor health outcomes.

Stuff cover this plus reaffirmation of Labour’s ‘best start’ handout for families with babies:  Labour offers six months paid work to young long-term unemployed

Meanwhile deputy leader Annette King has reaffirmed the party’s 2014 “best start” policy as party policy.

When it was announced in early 2014 then-leader David Cunliffe said it would give all families with a newborn and earning less than $150,000 a year, a payment of $60 a week through to the baby’s first birthday.

Parents on modest and middle incomes would receive the payment until their child turns three,” Cunliffe said at the time.

About 63,000 families, or 56 per cent of all 1 and 2-year-olds, would qualify for the extended payment.

Also from the conference:

Snippets from @TheNBR:

Little praises Michael Cullen for managing debt. Wants government to put cash into the Super Fund to manage superannuation.

Little calls Election 2017 a “neck and neck race between the left and right block..We are going to win”

Little turns to tax cuts: “Those who already have the most already have more”

So far: Little outlines policy on housing, education, homelessness, health, crime.

Little finishes his speech to Labour delegates. Heads off stage to cheers and dubstep music..”are you ready, are you ready, are you ready”

Little’s speech:

Transcript: https://thestandard.org.nz/andrew-little-speech-ready-for-work/

Leave a comment

34 Comments

  1. Kitty Catkin

     /  6th November 2016

    My late husband was involved in a scheme like this (there have been how many ?) and it was expensive and difficult to run. People didn’t turn up, they were unskilled and, with the best will in the world, couldn’t do the job properly and a lot had to be done again by people who did.

    Reply
  2. Corky

     /  6th November 2016

    I can tell Andy now there’s no way Maori youth would be able to handle the prospect of time management and work. It is anathema to them. However, it may work with other young people. But overall it looks like one of those policies that will cost more to implement than the expected outcomes. That said its a policy that may find favour with the general public who want taxpayer supported young people to work.

    Reply
    • Kitty Catkin

       /  6th November 2016

      It’s not as easy as it sounds to implement, as anyone who’s ever tried can witness, and it can cost a vast amount in tools, supervisors (who also need to be trained) and many other unforeseen things..

      It is a very sweeping generalisation that Maori youth would be unable to handle work and time management. Many can, some can’t. Having white skin is no guarantee that people will, either. There is a young Maori woman in the Waikato who has organised teams of volunteers to do various things like putting steps in the main Maori cemetery. Her willingness to muck in and ability to get things done is astonishing for someone of that age, and it has been recognised. I think that she’s only 20 now, if she’s even that; what will she be like when she’s 40 ?

      Reply
      • Corky

         /  6th November 2016

        ‘It is a very sweeping generalisation that Maori youth would be unable to handle work and time management.’

        I stand 100 % behind my comments. I have proven to myself time, time, and time again modern Maori youth can’t hack it.

        Now, you may ask why. Well first is drug addiction. 80 plus percent of young Maori are druggies. That leads to short attention spans. It leads to cold-turkey when they haven’t been able to source drugs. That leads to fights and just walking off the job to find a bro with a hit.
        Everything is fine while they are high and the novelty hasn’t worn off. After that…craaash.

        BJ brings up the Army. This is where things get interesting. Most Maori excel in the Army. And not just as Grunts. Our SAS is over 50% Maori. You have to have more brains and guts to be in that unit then just physical fitness and being thick as pig shite as many racists like contending to explain this anomaly.

        He’s the rub. Maori are tribal creatures. If they are put in a situation were they can’t follow their natural inclination to cruise and use minimal effort, they will settle into a rhythm and pull their weight.

        But in civilian life Maori aren’t great at personal life management. David Haerewa, killer of baby Moko, excelled at the Winz courses he attended. Top of his class in many of them. But when the courses finished….. well, look what happened.

        So to summarise. For Maori such schemes usually end two ways. They stick the course out but lose all motivation once said course finishes. Or they just leave the course because they can’t be bothered. Of course this is a generalisation. Yes, there are successful Maori youth who go on to succeed, but they are in the minority from my experience. Quite frankly, I have no answers to this dilemma

        Reply
        • About 20% of Maori 15-24 year olds are not in employment, education or training. So 4 out of 5 of them are employment, education or training, which is a large majority of them.

          http://www.mbie.govt.nz/about/whats-happening/news/2016/latest-labour-market-factsheets-for-maori-and-pacific-peoples-released

          Reply
          • Kitty Catkin

             /  6th November 2016

            I thought it was 10-11%.

            80+% are druggies ? That I find hard to believe. Impossible, in fact.

            Reply
            • I think ‘unemployment’ is around 10-11% but others in training and education are also not working.

            • Kitty Catkin

               /  6th November 2016

              That would explain the difference; I looked it up this afternoon and it had gone up a little from 10something to about 11.

            • Corky

               /  6th November 2016

              You can believe what you want. I know from direct experience. There’s a difference. Just like the stats Pete has posted are misleading.Howc ome? Maori work providers inflate numbers to gain more funding. That is one reason. And to be fair the government has tightened up. But it still goes on.

            • Kitty Catkin

               /  6th November 2016

              If you know every young Maori person in NZ, that does put a different complexion on it, of course.

            • Corky

               /  6th November 2016

              No, I don’t know every young person in NZ. Don’t be disingenuous. .Have a guess how i have come to that conclusions?

          • Kitty Catkin

             /  6th November 2016

            A sample of one is far too small to prove anything. I knew a Maori teacher who is now a headmaster-again, too small a sample to prove anything.

            Reply
  3. Of course young Maori youth can deal with time management. Look at the Army and National Service. If Labour want to invest in a workable scheme that will help everyone, then offer a year’s training in National Service where they should be able to develop the skills needed like time management, personal hygiene, care for themselves and others, elementary budgeting, first aid, investment skills, manners etc etc. They have to see not just a purpose in their time being invested, they need to believe they are contributing to the nation. The Regular Force won’t thank me for saying bring back CMT, but those who do go will say thanks. Of that I am certain. Do not make up work, give it a real purpose.

    Reply
    • Kitty Catkin

       /  6th November 2016

      Look at anyone working anywhere, like the young waiter a friend & I had yesterday.People working in cafes and shops need to deal with time management. People working in garages and factories do. The idea that Maori people can’t do this is absurd. If this was so, they would have 100% unemployment-who in their right mind would employ someone who was genetically incapable of time management and, in the case of young people, had an 80% plus chance of being a druggie ?

      Reply
    • @ bj – Surely young people have the opportunity to enter the military voluntarily if they wish to already … now? One would hope WINZ and schools’ career advisors make this known to them? The army is a career option.

      A volunteer army is the only ethical way to have a military. Otherwise, what are you saying? That ALL youth should do CMT or only a selected few, Maori unemployed youth? That’s military training based on race-work-&-age-based social profiling, not CMT or what you call “National Service” … This makes the Birthday Ballot look squeaky clean by comparison.

      I’d like to see you get Max Key to do CMT … This is to say nothing of the basic fitness requirements … or the wider ‘fitness’ ramifications … the personal and social fitness to bear arms?

      There are perfectly reasonable moral and ethical objections to military training, despite all the potentially and theoretically useful things it might teach, e.g, if you go into the army you might as well learn a trade, surely? Let’s review your list as an example …

      time management – as ordered – personal hygiene – sure, good – care for themselves and others – unless they’re ordered to threaten, capture, wound or kill the ‘others’, which, on occasions, may be their fellow citizens [plus, is developing the ability to kill actually “caring for oneself”? – elementary budgeting, first aid, investment skills – okay – manners – a difficult subject due to the grey zone between ‘respect’ and ‘unquestioning conformity’ …

      ” … they need to believe they are contributing to the nation.”

      This is exactly what Labour are asking them to do, IMHO, except through “environmental and community projects” rather than military service …

      What’s the real danger in this? Perhaps its the danger posed by any ideas vaguely involving “collectivism” as diametrically opposed to “individualism” in the capitalist mindset …? Perhaps its the danger of teaching disaffected Maori youth the use of weapons, which they might use otherwise when they emerge from CMT and find the system that put them there unchanged …?

      Disregard that “community” or collective ideals – marae, hapu, iwi – may actually suit some/many Maori better … it also being an essential ingredient of the [particularly] lower ranks mentality of any armed service? We’re actually talking about various forms of ‘team work’ aren’t we? Its just that team work at the “community” level, possibly much less hierarchical and much more ‘democratic’, is somehow frowned upon …?

      Due to this “fog of motivations”, the tables might actually be turned? The army might very well be involved in an environmental and community service rather than protection-and/or-control capacity … as organisers, mentors, colleagues, fellows and leaders … If they are capable of such a thing?

      Reply
  4. PDB

     /  6th November 2016

    “Compulsory voting: passed a remit to investigate with view to implement in 2nd term of Govt”

    ‘Not voting’ is a democratic right as is being apolitical – we should never implement compulsory voting for these very reasons.

    Reply
    • Alan Wilkinson

       /  6th November 2016

      Labour want their ungrateful beneficiaries to be forced or carried to the polls to vote for them. But they know they will be resentful so they only want to do it after they’ve scored their max two terms and hope that by the next time they get in their victims will have forgotten who to blame.

      Reply
      • Gezza

         /  6th November 2016

        Brilliant ! 😕 And the missing 1/2 million who just wanted to stay at home or work that day will slouch on down to the polling booth & retaliate by voting against them. 🙄

        Reply
    • Blazer

       /  7th November 2016

      So Australia is an undemocratic country by your measure.

      Reply
      • PDB

         /  7th November 2016

        In this particular aspect they are wrong in forcing people to vote – not many countries do.

        Reply
    • Gezza

       /  6th November 2016

      If it won’t be compulsory, but there are sanctions if they don’t, how the heck does that really differ from compulsory?

      Reply
      • artcroft

         /  6th November 2016

        Cos it’s Labour doing the thinking here. Make that non-thinking.
        Angry Andy classic quotes: It’s black but it white, its up but its down, its my head up my arse.

        Reply
  5. Sanctions? Bringing back the cat of 9 tails, or village stocks, or financial penalties, yeh right. Come on Andrew get mind into gear before using tongue to utter sinister innuendo!

    Reply
    • Blazer

       /  7th November 2016

      In aussie you are fined $26 for not voting.It is enforced.

      Reply
      • Gezza

         /  7th November 2016

        I’d bet their next vote is agin the Party that was in charge when they got fined the last time.

        Reply
  6. Maggy Wassilieff

     /  6th November 2016

    What fun…. I’ve commented on Kiwiblog about some of the fishhooks nowadays with sending volunteers to environmental projects….

    Extra costs … boots, wet-weather gear, PLB for each person going to work in the outdoors.
    Dunny arrangements..

    First volunteer that goes AWOL in the bush or has a serious accident – there’ll be an OUTCRY.

    Reply
    • Blazer

       /  7th November 2016

      Aren’t you just wonderful.Periodic detention worked o.k ,and managed to deal with your ‘fish hooks’.

      Reply
  7. Blazer

     /  7th November 2016

    Compulsory voting is hardly radical and was introdued in Australia by a right wing party….’

    ‘ As of August 2013, 22 countries, including 12 Latin American countries, have laws for compulsory voting and 11 of these 22 countries enforce these laws in practice.’
    ‘Supporters of compulsory voting generally look upon voter participation as a civic duty, similar to taxation, jury duty, compulsory education or military service; one of the ‘duties to community’ mentioned in the United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights.[4] They believe that by introducing an obligation to vote, it helps to overcome the occasional inconvenience that voting imposes on an individual in order to produce governments with more stability, legitimacy and a genuine mandate to govern, which in turn benefits that individual even if their preferred candidate or party isn’t elected to power.’…wiki.

    Reply
    • PDB

       /  7th November 2016

      Pity you didn’t provide the other side of the matter from the same Wikipedia entry…….

      “Voting may be seen as a civic right rather than a civic duty. While citizens may exercise their civil rights (free speech, right to an attorney, etc.) they are not compelled to.
      Another argument against compulsory voting, prevalent among legal scholars in the United States, is that it is essentially a compelled speech act, which violates freedom of speech because the freedom to speak necessarily includes the freedom not to speak.

      Only 22 countries have compulsory voting so hardly a widely practised system, and for good reason as ‘not voting’ should be a legitimate right for all citizens.

      Reply
      • Blazer

         /  7th November 2016

        tell that to the aussies,the country most like NZ in the world.As for the rest of the Wiki entry it was not relevant to the premise that compulsory voting is not a radical concept.I don’t favour it personally.

        Reply

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