Every winter Sarah* and Mike make the choice between groceries, or clothes for their children.
Born 14 weeks early, Destiny has a weakened immune system and gets sick easily. Last winter, she missed a whole term of school due to sickness.
Poverty has been labelled the key driver for respiratory illnesses that are weighing on New Zealand’s economy to the tune of $6 billion each year, according to figures from the Asthma and Respiratory Foundation.
But with a family of eight, the $500-odd they get from Work and Income and Mark’s part-time job as a teacher aide only goes so far, Sarah said.
A family of eight?
Maybe have fewer kids. I am all for a welfare system that allows a couple, no matter their income, to support say a couple of kids. But six kids? Surely there should be some personal responsibility about having more kids than you can afford.