The combined effects of COVID, rapid cost-of-living rises, and the catastrophic weather events, have pushed many Kiwi families close to the poverty line with others having already toppled over it. The hope was for some respite in the Government’s 2023 Budget announcement. The Government, however, was facing the financial challenges caused by the community and infrastructure rebuilding required following Cyclone Gabrielle.
Our 2023 Budget Response outlines what was promised and comments on how this will that affect New Zealanders. It reviews five cost of living supports designed to “help relieve cost of living pressures,” as well as evaluating other social support announcements of significance
Amid the challenge posed by the effects of the weather events, we applaud anything the Government can do to reduce the immediate and longer-term effects of poverty; our report urges the Government and other organisations to remember, however, that some aspects of flood relief, e.g., housing, counselling, and financial mentoring, may be long-term challenges and we need to be prepared to support whānau in every possible way.