The efforts by the bishops of the Anglican Church to ensure that the issue of child poverty is not forgotten is a call to all New Zealanders to take action, says Labour’s Interfaith-Dialogue Spokesperson, Su’a William Sio.
“I think the Anglican Church is right on the mark and this Government has to focus on child poverty in the next 3 years and we have to hold them accountable to it.
“All New Zealanders, especially our faith communities should be standing together to demand from this Government the eradication of child poverty in New Zealand. This is the right thing to do. All other issues pale into insignificance and distract us from achieving the eradication of child poverty.
“Child poverty was raised by almost all the political parties in recognition that we’ve got one in five of our kids who don’t have the fundamental essentials of life.
“These children and the families they belong to are deprived of the most basic human needs. Many of these families are now classified as working poor.
“They work but do not have sufficient hours. They earn a wage, but can’t sustain themselves on what they earn. They don’t get enough to eat, they are living in inadequate housing or homeless, they face third world diseases; they have inadequate shoes and clothing; and often sleep in cold and damp conditions at night.
“Every kiwi I know aspires to get ahead. They want a job that pays well. They want a roof over their head and they want to provide for their families and see their children excel at school,” says Su’a William Sio.
The Anglican Church have created a booklet as part of a campaign they have launched to get Anglicans to reflect, pray and take action on child poverty.