There are some more questions that should be asked here. For example, the loan repayments – what were the loans for? A big flash car – or car repairs? A big flash TV – or school uniforms? Ciggy’s and TAB – or shoes for the kids? If you owe money then you are living outside your means and need to look at your budgeting. It seems that learning to deny yourself wants in order to pay for needs is a skill lacking in many today.
On the other hand, I can’t imagine anyone spending only $30 a week on electricity.
From Kiwiblog today, this on the cost of breakfast
The cost of breakfast
June 1st, 2013 at 10:00 am by David Farrar
It can cost parents less than 50 cents a day to give their child breakfast, but principals say most families who send their children to school hungry cannot afford to feed them.
Really. I’d welcome one solid example of a family who can’t afford 40c a day for breakfast. By a solid example I mean full details of their income and expenditure.
But Hamilton beneficiary and mother-of-two, Ali, says she battles every week to put potatoes, rice and Weet-Bix on the table and petrol in the car with the $38 she has left after rent, bills and loan repayments.
The Waikato Times has found that a basic breakfast of Weet-Bix and milk, peanut butter on toast, or porridge costs between 20 and 39 cents a day per child – between $1.43 and $2.73 a week.
And the DPB pays $295 a week in the hand plus $157 family tax credit is $452 a week. Breakfast for two kids is $3 to $6 a week from that or around 1%.
$293 from Winz, plus $120 rent assistance.
$285 rent. $30 electricity. $60 loan repayments to the bank and people to whom she owes money.
$38 left for petrol, food and unplanned expenses.
They appear to have left out the $157 family tax credit. Did the reporter not ask, or does Ali not mention it, or has she failed to register for it?
One suggestion that I’ve seen is that the cost of feeding these children breakfast in school, should be covered by reducing the DPB by the same amount per week as it costs to provide the food. Which would mean that the taxpayer was not paying twice, as so often happens.
Just found this paragraph on the blog Thoughts from 40° South, which I think sums up how most kiwis feel about this:
Green Party leader Metiria Turei asks about the cartoons, “Does our country really hate us?” My response to that, on another blog, is when you treat the rest of us like slaves who exist merely to serve you, are you really surprised? The productive minority in this country, who pay all the taxes (17% of New Zealand households pay 97% of income taxes), are getting tired of being the milch cows for those who are not prepared to take responsibility for providing for the children that they bring into the world. We have a right to be resentful and Al Nisbet was insightful and absolutely correct to express that sentiment.