9 Sep 2014

Doubts over cross-party poverty agreement

7:07 pm on 9 September 2014

A Maori child advocacy group, Mana Ririki, doubts National would support the idea of a cross-party political agreement to eliminate poverty for tamariki in New Zealand.

The Child Poverty Action Group is calling for political leaders to commit to improving the health and well-being of children.

It says more than 200,000 tamariki are living in poverty and current policies are inadequate to address the issue.

Mana Ririki said nearly half of the affected children are Maori or Pasifika.

Executive director Anton Blank said the action group's idea was good, but he believed the National Party would not support a cross-party agreement.

He said the party appeared to be uncomfortable with the issue of child poverty.

Mr Blank said it had a problem with acknowledging there was a link between child poverty and violence.

He said the child advocacy sector could potentially work more quickly than Government, and offer ideas to address the problem.

Get the RNZ app

for ad-free news and current affairs