As 2016 draws to a close, it’s time to look back on the political year - and the Nats have had a shocker. We’ve highlighted ten of the ways National has made Kiwis’ lives even harder:
1. They STILL haven’t acted on the housing crisis.
Today, only a quarter of adults under the age of 40 own their own home. That’s down from more than 50% in 1991. Also, the average first home buyer’s loan has risen by 43% since 2014. Yet National spent much of 2016 continuing to deny that there even is a housing crisis.
2. They’re selling off state houses while thousands are homeless.
10,000 children are homeless and living in cars or garages. Despite this, National has persisted with their state house sell-off, and there are 2400 state houses around the country which are lying empty.
3. They won’t act on rising crime.
There are now over 200 burglaries a day, up 18% in the past year alone. Fewer than one in ten burglaries are ever solved. National’s turning a blind eye to crime.
4. They’ve consistently underfunded police.
This year a frontline police officer wrote: ‘Crime is up, police numbers are down, and the bosses are starting to make promises to the public that we can’t keep if we don’t increase our numbers.’ Under National, our police force is underresourced and overstretched.
5. They’re unconcerned about young Kiwis who are unable to find work.
Thousands of our young people are stuck on the dole and struggling to find work – and National isn't fussed.
6. They don’t buy Kiwi-made.
National has sent billions of dollars in contracts to foreign companies, for everything from Kiwirail wagons to the IRD’s computer system.
7. They’ve cut the health budget by $1.7 billion.
96-year-old Trixie Cottingham’s local DHB is so underfunded that her home care was cut, and last year over half a million Kiwis didn’t visit a GP when they needed to because of the cost. National’s huge health cuts are impacting Kiwis’ everyday lives.
8. They’ve cut funding to Pharmac.
Kiwis are dying because the public health system can’t afford the latest cancer medicines.
9. They’ve neglected education and our kids are suffering.
Under National our kids’ performance in reading, maths and science are in decline and now stand at the lowest ever level. Meanwhile, schools are struggling to make ends meet and parents are having to cover the shortfall. School donations are going up at over 10 times the rate of inflation.
10. Tertiary education and post-school training costs have gone up a staggering 40%.
The cost of getting a tertiary education or post-school training has shot up 40% under National, and the number of people studying for qualifications is falling.
But Labour has a plan.
1: We’ll fix the housing crisis.
Unlike National, Labour has a comprehensive plan to fix the housing crisis. We’ll build 100,000 affordable homes for first home buyers, and we’ll ban foreign speculators.
2: We’ll stop the state house-sell off.
And we’ll stop taking a dividend from Housing New Zealand. Instead, that money will be put into more state houses. We will require all rentals to be warm, dry, and healthy to live in.
3. We’ll invest in extra police.
Labour will recruit 1,000 additional police officers to focus on violent crime, drugs, robberies, and burglaries. We will invest in community policing.
4. And we’ll fund them properly.
Labour will stop the cuts to the police and make our communities safer.
5. We’ll help our young people get into employment.
Labour will hire 10,000 unemployed young people each year to work on environmental and community projects. That’ll be beneficial to society, and will give them work experience and an income.
6. We’ll support local businesses and workers.
Labour will require government organisations to buy Kiwi-made wherever possible, keeping money and jobs in New Zealand.
7. We’ll fund health properly.
Labour will reverse National’s $1.7 billion of health cuts.
8. We’ll make sure Pharmac has money to invest in life-saving medicines.
Labour will increase funding to Pharmac for breakthrough treatments.
9. We’ll ensure our kids get the best education they possibly can.
Labour will end National’s funding freeze for schools and invest in education.
10. We’ll make university and post-school training accessible.
It's time to change the government. If you're with us, say you're in here.