Kerre Woodham supports Tariana Turia on abolishing the dole.
It’s an idea that could have only come from the Maori Party. If Act or National had suggested this, we’d have all been leaping up and down and accusing them of heartlessness.
But the idea of working for the dole has some merit.
I would hate to see us operate as some other countries do, where people either work or die. But when you’re working every hour God sends, it’s galling to think of healthy, able-bodied people collecting money from the taxpayer for doing nothing.
All the people I’ve spoken to on the radio who’ve been unemployed for any length of time say it’s soul-destroying. Their confidence diminishes by the day, they become lethargic and unmotivated and a sense of worthlessness pervades.
There’s never enough money – rather than being grateful for the money they get from the state, they feel aggrieved that it’s not more and they become alienated from the community.
On the other hand, work is good for the soul. I’m not sure about the make-work schemes – they’re extremely expensive and if the workers feel they’re just marking time, doing something pointless, they don’t even get the satisfaction of a job well done.
Making it easier for employers to give somebody a chance might be the way to go. Given how difficult it is to fire someone who doesn’t work out, and given the speed with which employees contact lawyers when they’re shown the door, many small business owners are justifiably wary of taking a chance on someone whose CV might be a little patchy.
So Kerre supports work for the dole and grievance free trial periods. Her conversion from a latte liberal to a member of the Vast Right Wing Conspiracy continues.