Billions added to benefit bill

The New Zealand National Party

The cost of Jobseeker Support will almost double to $4.5 billion next year as taxpayers bear the cost of failing to save jobs, National’s spokesperson for Social Development Louise Upston says.

“New Zealanders will be counting the cost of the biggest benefit bill we’ve ever seen as Budget 2020 reveals the magnitude of the unemployment crisis.

“With 300,000 people expected to end up on the dole, expected Jobseeker Support will be more than $4.5 billion next year – almost double the $2.4 billion paid out this year.

“The bill for Jobseeker Support alone will cost $2500 per household and will have to be paid by our children and grandchildren.

“It’s worrying that almost half of the nearly 40,000 new jobseekers during lockdown had little or no previous benefit history and many were in their 20s. The huge social cost of increasing unemployment will lead to personal financial hardship and worsening mental health.

“This shows why it is so important to have a plan that will get New Zealand working again, National does – so what’s the Government’s excuse?

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