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  • Robert MacCulloch

Relief for the unemployed is good

Newshub reports on the Government's relief package to workers who've lost jobs due to the Covid-19 pandemic:


"Depending on whether someone is a part-time or full-time worker, they will receive either $250 or $490 per week for 12 weeks .... [National Party Leader] Muller believes the focus should be on businesses and how to keep them afloat to keep people in jobs "in the first place". "We support supporting New Zealanders in a moment of significant need, but our concern with that announcement is it's ill-defined and ill-directed," he said on Monday .. "What would've been better is a stronger focus on businesses to keep them in business"


National's reaction is unexpected. Even the US has implemented more generous payments for the unemployed, under the Families First Coronavirus Response Act, as well as the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act, both passed in March 2020. A pro-market political party should welcome providing additional insurance at times of great uncertainty to people who have lost jobs through no fault of their own.


Why argue the focus should be on subsidizing business? Sounds like a pro-business, not a pro-market policy to me. A core role of government is to provide social insurance, not use taxpayers money to keep businesses in business. When a business depends on taxpayers money, it's no longer a business - it starts looking like a government department.


For the full Newshub article, see:

https://www.newshub.co.nz/home/politics/2020/05/todd-muller-slams-government-s-income-relief-payments-as-ill-defined-and-ill-directed.html