Big reduction in young mums on benefit – Government

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Source: New Zealand Government – Big reduction in young mums on benefit

Social Development Minister Anne Tolley says the number of young mothers requiring a benefit has almost halved since 2009, meaning better lives for these families and fewer long-term beneficiaries.

Figures show that there were 48 per cent fewer teen mums on main benefits at the end of 2014 compared to 2009.

Teen parents spend an average 19 years on a benefit, and have some of the highest lifetime costs of any group on welfare.

“The significant reduction in teen mums on benefit is very pleasing, following the range of supports that this Government has provided to young parents,” says Mrs Tolley.

“Through our major investment in Youth Services we are enabling these young people to take part in education and training to give them the tools they need to get into employment.

“Alongside this we have increased their access to budgeting and parenting courses and childcare.

“We want to see these young mums become successful, independent women with children who are thriving, rather than relying on benefits for decades to come.

“These statistics show that they are taking full advantage of the opportunities provided, which is great news for these young families and for taxpayers.”

Young mothers receiving a main benefit, at end of December 2009, 2013 and 2014

Young mothers receiving a main benefit, at end of December 2009, 2013 and 2014Young mothers receiving a main benefit, at end of December 2009, 2013 and 2014

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Selwyn Manning, BCS (Hons.) MCS (Hons.) is an investigative political journalist with 23 years media experience. He specializes in reportage and analysis of socioeconomics, politics, foreign affairs, and security/intelligence issues. Selwyn has extensive experience as a commentator and has provided live political analysis to a wide range of television and radio organizations broadcasting in New Zealand, Australia and globally including the BBC (Five Live, London) and BBC (World Service). He is currently a correspondent to Australia's FiveAA radio, and is a regular live-on-air panelist on Radio New Zealand's The Panel with broadcaster Jim Mora.

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