What can we learn from Asian parents

Lindsay Mitchell blogs on three lots of data from the Household Economic and Health Surveys.

First she looks at the proportion of children living in households with high housing costs, by ethnicity. The figures are:

  • European 8% over 50%, 35% over 30%
  • Maori 8% over 50%, 32% over 30%
  • Pacific 10% over 50%, 34% over 30%
  • Asian 18% over 50%, 48% over 30%

So Asian children are far far more likely to live in a household with high housing costs than other ethnicities. So does this mean they are far more likely to live in mouldy homes:

  • European 5% of children live in mouldy homes
  • Maori 11%
  • Pacific 17%
  • Asian 3%

How about going hungry as their housing costs are so high. Here is the proportion of children living in a household where food sometimes or often runs out:

  • European 15%
  • Maori 29%
  • Pacific 45%
  • Asian 12%

Lindsay concludes:

Asian children live in homes with the highest ratio of housing- to- income costs.

Asian children have the lowest experience of damp, mouldy homes.

Asian children are the least likely to go hungry.

Looks a lot to me like Asians prioritise renting or buying at the limit of their capability; that they seek better properties and better neighbourhoods and take responsibility for any damp or mould; and that even on tight budgets they know how to feed their kids.

Many Asians are immigrants. A lot come from countries that are much poorer than New Zealand. We should look at why they are relatively so successful and try to emulate it.

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