ACT party says people on benefit should not have babies


ACT party leader David Seymour says if his party helps form the next Government, beneficiaries who “keep having children” will have their financial freedom taken away.

Speaking in the minor party leaders debate last Saturday Seymour said having babies while on the benefit was an “outrage” to working parents, and “the biggest driver of child poverty in this country.

“We don’t want the state controlling people’s reproduction. That’s disgusting.

“What we do need to say is that we have a crisis in this country where one in five children are born into a family dependent on a benefit.”

Seymour said that if a person on the benefit keeps having children they will be subject to income management.

“We’re gonna pay your rent, pay your power, pay for the groceries so the kids get the benefit of those resources and we break the cycle of child poverty in this country.”

In July Seymour told Jack Tame on TVNZ1’s Breakfast the $60 benefit for every New Zealand child promised by the Labour Party would lead people to intentionally profiteer off having more children.

“At the margin, yes people will change their mind [about having children] because they’ll say ‘oh the Government will give me this money now’,” Mr Seymour said.

He told Tame “all of the things a bleeding heart liberal, like yourself Jack, worries about all the time have been created, in terms of child poverty, by a welfare experiment gone wrong over the last 50 years.”

Around the same time ACT deputy leader Beth Houlbrooke said the Labour Party promise “could extend the misery of child poverty and even child abuse”, and that “parents who cannot afford to have children should not be having them”.

Seymour said it just happened to be a coincidence that he sent his social media followers a photograph of an ACT-branded condom on the same day his deputy leader said poor people shouldn’t have babies.

The condom wrapper had a sticker saying, “Helping people keep more of what they make – Vote ACT.”


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