I just received an email from a constituent Alisha Keoghan who describes herself as a working Mum. Alisha says what I think most of West Auckland and much of New Zealand is feeling. She and her husband are working harder and harder and not getting ahead.
Wages are too low. Houses are too expensive. There aren’t enough jobs. The costs of commuting, paying childcare, and all the monthly bills leave little left over.
I am a resident of Te Atatu South and I have received your letter in the mail re: mobile clinic.
I would have loved to come along but tomorrow it is my birthday.
I know this will fall on deaf ears but I don’t know what else to do.
I have worked full time since the age of 16 and have been a law abiding citizen paying my taxes etc.
I went on maternity leave end of Aug 2011 and then resigned from my job (of 6 years) as the cost of childcare to gas, parking, traffic to and from the city was not going to work in my favour.
My question is how am I meant to succeed in my life? I want to work full time. I am not a home body and I want to provide for my family and pay off a home.
I see young teens walking the streets with the newest iphones, smoking, drinking and I cant even afford to get my son nappies from time to time?
I dont get the logic of it all? I would LOVE more then anything to go out and have a glass of wine with my girlfriends but I just get NO help from the government.
IRD and WINZ tell me we make too much $??? How is my husband earning $20 ph earning enough to pay rent, power, water, rego, WOF, gas, groceries enough?
Im so ashamed of the system! I need help or a job! I am a talented woman! I worked for Baycorp NZ for 6 years in the sales area and now I am stuck in a temp job with not even a guaranteed 40 hours and childcare of $235 per week to pay for?
How is Labour going to help me?
A far as I’m concerned John Key’s only concern is looking after the rich! I would be rich if I was given the opportunity!
I replied to Alisha that this is not what we want for New Zealand. Labour’s vision is for a more prosperous New Zealand where people who are prepared to work hard can get ahead.
I cited a few of our policies I believe will make the difference she wants to see:
1. Jobs – This is our number one priority. We will support Kiwi firms, and grow more and better paid jobs. We are going to support our exporters, and help NZ manufacturing to rebuild.
2. Minimum wage – We will increase the minimum wage to $15\hour immediately.
3. Housing affordability – We will build 10,000 affordable starter homes every year for 10 years. This will drive down the cost of families getting into their first homes.
4. Public transport – we will deliver better public transport. I am campaigning for high frequency bus routes, a dedicated busway on the NW Motorway, and a commuter ferry service for Te Atatu that would mean she would not need a car for commuting to work.
5. Skills and training – Labour will increase the number of apprenticeships, and training opportunities.
This is the job description of the 6th Labour Government.
* email posted with Alisha’s permission.