NZ gets a poor social progress report card from the Salvation Army

The Salvation Army’s 2013 State of the Nation Report identifies a mixture of success and failure in New Zealand’s social progress over the past twelve months.

Through reference to social and economic data the Report identifies significant positive progress in areas of pre-school education and crime and punishment. It also demonstrates how little has been achieved over the past five years in at least three areas of serious social need: housing, child poverty and youth employment.

Salvation Army spokesman Major Campbell Roberts said over the past five years, Auckland had built up a housing deficit of more than 16,000 dwellings. Child poverty has been hovering around 21 percent. Youth employment has fallen to its lowest level in more than 10 years.

“If our children came home with a ‘D’ from school, most of us would have a vigorous plan of action to turn it around. That same vigour is needed from our political and Government agency leaders.”

Roberts said we needed to stop saying, “She’ll be Right” and start saying, “It’s not alright” when it came to these issues.

Sometimes it seems that as a nation we’re taking a “she’ll be right” attitude to policy,’ says Major Roberts. ‘This results in people living in situations of unnecessary hardship.’

Report Card

  • Teenage pregnancy A
  • Early childhood education B
  • Infant mortality B
  • Housing related debt C+
  • Drug related crime C+
  • Wages and incomes C+
  • Children at risk C+
  • Benefits and pensions C
  • Living costs and food poverty C
  • Alcohol C Gambling C
  • Housing affordability C-
  • Children and violence D
  • Educational achievement D
  • Child poverty D
  • Employment and unemployment D
  • Housing availability D


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News category: New Zealand.

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