119-1 support for Child Poverty Reduction Bill

All parties except ACT (David Seymour) voted in favour of the third reading (and final vote) of the Child Poverty Reduction Bill in Parliament yesterday.

NZ Herald: Child Poverty Reduction Bill passes third reading

The Prime Minister’s Child Poverty Reduction Bill has passed its third reading in Parliament with near unanimous support from political parties on both sides.

The bill, which will set measures and targets for reducing child poverty, inform strategy to achieve that and require transparent reporting on poverty levels and introduce accountability for governments, was a cornerstone of Labour’s election campaign last year and on the list of achievements for the coalition Government’s first 100 days in office.

Speaking in Parliament today, Ardern said it was no longer just a Labour Party bill.

“This is now an initiative that has been led by a coalition Government with the support of New Zealand First and the Green Party.

Children’s Commissioner Judge Andrew Becroft recently praised both National and Labour for supporting the bill.

“That was a game changer … having a cross-party accord is historic and the bill is about to be passed any day now and it will be all systems go and I will be watching very closely,” he said.

Ardern:

“And it also is an initiative that has had the support of the National Party. I want to acknowledge that. This is this Parliament’s collective challenge, and the groups that have come together in Parliament today to support it in this House mean that it will have an enduring legacy”

National’s social development spokeswoman Louise Upston said the legislation gave the Opposition and the public the opportunity to measure the progress of the Government.

National agreed in October to support the bill to become law, with some amendments after Ardern and National leader Simon Bridges worked behind the scenes to come to an agreement.

Party leaders constructively working together does not often get reported, and deserves credit (to both Ardern and Bridges).