20 Jul 2016

Ethnic inequalities in NZ poverty unchanged

6:22 am on 20 July 2016

A study has found major ethnic inequalities in poverty among young people in New Zealand has remained the same for over two decades.

The study of 8500 secondary students done in 2012 has found that nearly half of Pacific students are living in poverty.

Researchers using the data have found that overall one in five young people were found to be suffering hardship and two thirds of that group had housing issues such as living in garages or using living rooms as bedrooms.

The findings are no surprise according to Mike O'Brien, a spokesperson for Child Poverty Action Group.

Mr O'Brien said the unchanging statistics show that the government has not done enough.

"To be quite blunt about it, I don't think there's any really serious commitment on government part to actually reducing poverty rates for households with children."

"They're relying entirely on paid work as the solution but given that 37 percent of children that in poverty are in households whose income comes from work, work in itself is not a solution," he said.