Index main benefits to wages

Illustration of an apple

Children and young people have what they need

Lead agency:
Ministry of Social Development
Action timeframe:
Implemented April 2020

Benefit levels have declined as a proportion of average wages over time, meaning the gap between the living standards of beneficiaries and other New Zealanders has grown.

From 1 April 2020, main benefit rates will now be increased each year in line with wage growth, rather than inflation (consumers price index). This change will ensure rates of main benefits are maintained relative to wages in society.

Around 15 percent of main benefit recipients are aged under 25. Main benefits include Sole Parent Support; this is for single parents who can look for or prepare for part-time work and whose youngest dependent child is under 14 years old.

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