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Plan

Current Programme of Action

Issue date: 
Thursday, 29 August 2019
Publication category: 
Government strategy/plan

 

Introduction

This Current Programme of Action sets out the actions - policies, initiatives, programmes and plans - the Government will implement to help achieve the vision and outcomes of the Child and Youth Wellbeing Strategy (the Strategy). It should be read alongside the Strategy as it is aligned to the Strategy's framework.

The Child and Youth Wellbeing Strategy Framework 

The framework provides a shared understanding of what children and young people want and need for good wellbeing. It sets out what we can all do to support them to have good lives.

The framework is made up of a vision, six wellbeing outcomes, principles to guide the ongoing development and implementation of the Strategy, and indicators that measure whether we are making a difference. Anyone can adopt this framework. Some local authorities, iwi and community agencies are already interested in applying the framework to their planning and service delivery for children and young people.

The Current Programme of Action

The Current Programme of Action is organised into the six outcomes of the framework. There are focus areas and actions under each outcome. Just as the outcomes are interconnected, so too are the actions. While categorised under a single outcome, they will often achieve progress across several or all outcomes.

The Current Programme of Action focuses on the actions that the Government will deliver over the next 1–5 years. Work is already being done in some areas and, in others, further work is required. It is a starting point that the Government has committed to build on.

The Current Programme of Action draws on evidence about what works, focuses on where the urgent needs are, and gets started on the longer-term changes needed to transform systems and services to improve the wellbeing of children and young people.

The Government has given priority to actions that will...

  • Reduce child poverty and mitigate the impacts of poverty and socio-economic disadvantage
  • Better support children and young people of interest to Oranga Tamariki and address family and sexual violence
  • Better support children and young people with greater needs, with an initial focus on learning support and mental wellbeing

As well as identifying significant actions for these priority areas, the Current Programme of Action also identifies other actions across all areas of child and youth wellbeing. 

Driving government policy in a unified and holistic way

A key purpose of the Strategy is to drive government policy in a unified and holistic way. Collective Ministerial and agency action is needed to deliver the actions and achieve the Strategy's outcomes. The Current Programme of Action brings together more than 20 government agencies with responsibilities for child and youth wellbeing. It is not an implementation plan. As the governance group for the Strategy, the Social Wellbeing Board will work with agencies to determine roles and responsibilities for implementation.

Families, whānau, hapū, iwi, community groups, non-government organisations, the philanthropic sector, business and local government all have important roles to improve child and youth wellbeing. These groups may want to develop their own plans or programmes using the Strategy's framework. Further information and resources are available at childyouthwellbeing.govt.nz

Overview: The Framework

"Overview: The Framework" visually displays the framework of the Strategy on a page. This can be downloaded and printed on an A3 page to use as a tool for conversation (page 1). The content of this document is replicated in "Section B: The Framework".

Overview: Current Programme of Action

"Overview: Current Programme of Action" visually displays Government's focus areas and key actions for each outcome in the Strategy. This can be downloaded and printed on an A3 page to use as a tool for conversation (page 2). The content of this document is replicated in Section C: The Outcomes, under the subheadings "Government's focus areas and key actions".

Children and young people are loved, safe and nurtured

This means:

  • they feel loved and supported
  • they have family, whānau and homes that are loving, safe and nurturing
  • they are safe from unintentional harm
  • they are safe from intentional harm (including neglect, and emotional, physical and sexual abuse)
  • they are able to spend quality time with their parents, family and whānau.

Focus areas and key actions

The Government's priority for this outcome is to help ensure children and young people at greatest risk - those experiencing abuse or neglect, or those exposed to family or sexual violence - are loved, safe and nurtured. Actions are grouped in the following focus areas.

  • Support parents, caregivers, families and whānau. Government is extending paid parental leave, expanding Whānau Ora, and launching a nurse-led family partnership prototype. It is also developing new models of intensive intervention and early intervention to prevent children and young people entering State care.
  • Prevent harm and abuse. A national strategy and action plan to eliminate family violence and sexual violence is being developed by the Government in partnership with the sector, Māori and other stakeholders. Government has committed funding to a range of initiatives focused on preventing and mitigating harm to specific communities. A cross-agency work programme for the prevention of online child sexual exploitation and abuse is also being developed.
  • Support victims and their families and whānau. There are a range of initiatives to improve access to and quality of support for victims and their families and whānau, including services designed for children and youth, and kaupapa Māori services.
  • Improve the quality of State care. Oranga Tamariki has received funding to improve the quality of care and support for children and young people in State care, and their caregivers, and to improve outcomes for Māori in its services. Development of an Oranga Tamariki Action Plan will set out how agencies will work collectively to achieve wellbeing outcomes for children and young people of interest to Oranga Tamariki.

More detail on the Government's actions under this outcome is provided in the tables below.

Support parents, caregivers, families and whānau

Extend paid parental leave to 26 weeks

The Parental Leave and Employment Protection Amendment Act 2017 increased paid parental leave to 22 weeks from 1 July 2018, with a further increase to 26 weeks from 1 July 2020.

Lead agency: Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment

Timeframe: From 1 July 2020

Find out more


Expand coverage of Whānau Ora to support more whānau to thrive and achieve wellbeing outcomes

Budget 2019 provided funding to expand the coverage and impact of Whānau Ora. This initiative aims to increase support for whānau to achieve their aspirations and lift overall wellbeing. Increased funding will be available to develop localised commissioning opportunities to support more whānau and improve local decision-making and accountability processes.

Further funding will enable:

  • Whānau Ora navigators to improve their skills, knowledge and networks.
  • Te Puni Kōkiri to facilitate engagement and foster greater support for Whānau Ora across government agencies.

Lead agency: Te Puni Kōkiri

Timeframe: From July 2019

Find out more


Prototype nurse-led family partnership model

A prototype is being developed to test and evaluate a model of enhanced support for parents, caregivers and families and whānau who need help with mental health or addiction during pregnancy and the first two years of a child's life, or following a stillbirth.

Support will be needs based and may include home visits, peer-based support and talking therapies. Service co-design will be done over the first year, with delivery over the following two to four years.

Lead agency: Ministry of Health

Timeframe: 2019-2023


New model of intensive intervention for those at risk of entering State care

Budget 2019 funding will support a new model of intensive intervention for families and whānau to keep children and young people at risk of entering State care safely with their families and whānau.

The model is based on highly skilled workers working directly with families and whānau on an on-going basis. This will initially be rolled out in a small number of sites.

Lead agency: Oranga Tamariki

Timeframe: From 1 July 2019

Find out more


Oranga Tamariki early intervention support for families and whānau

Oranga Tamariki is developing a new early intervention system designed to offer families and whānau the support they need to prevent children and young people from entering the care, protection or youth justice systems.

Initial investment proposals are expected to be progressed through Budget 2020 and implemented over multiple years. This will build on current services. Oranga Tamariki currently invests around $160 million per year in a range of community-based prevention and early intervention services, which aim to address the early needs of children and young people and their families and whānau.

Lead agency: Oranga Tamariki

Timeframe: From 1 July 2019

Find out more

Supporting actions

  • Review of financial assistance for caregivers: Oranga Tamariki is reviewing financial assistance for caregivers of children who cannot be cared for by their parents due to care and protection issues, the death or incapacitation of their parents, or family breakdown.
  • Extension of You Matter to Us: Budget 2019 funding will extend the You Matter to Us pilot in Linwood to more communities in Christchurch. You Matter to Us is an early intervention and prevention initiative. Co-designed with the community, it focuses on empowering whānau, increasing protective factors for tamariki, and strengthening community cohesion and trust in government services.
  • Government's response to the Final Report of the Independent Panel examining the 2014 family justice reforms: The Panel was instructed to look at a wide range of factors, including the effectiveness of out-of-court and in-court processes, the timeliness of cases and the extent to which decisions are consistent with the welfare and best interests of the child. The Panel was asked to take a human rights approach when considering improvements to ensure that the welfare and best interests of children are paramount when settling disputes about their care. Decisions about changes are expected by the end of 2019, with initial investment proposals expected to be progressed through Budget 2020 and implemented over multiple years.

Prevent harm and abuse

National strategy and action plan to prevent and eliminate family violence and sexual violence

The national strategy and action plan will galvanise efforts to eliminate family violence and sexual violence. This will set a clear direction for a collective commitment to reduce violence, clarify the most critical strategic objectives and identify the actions required across the system.

To ensure the national strategy and action plan reflects the aspirations of all New Zealanders, they will be developed through open and engaging processes, including with people harmed by violence, people who have used violence, and a wide range of communities. They will also be developed in partnership with Māori and other stakeholders.

A national strategy will guide priorities for the Family and Sexual Violence Joint Venture (which brings together representatives of 10 government agencies) and for government agencies, and guide practical decisions at the front line in communities. A rolling action plan will help each government agency to see the part it plays alongside others in achieving these objectives, and allowing the public to track progress towards reducing violence.

Lead agency: Family and Sexual Violence Joint Venture

Timeframe: From 2019

Find out more


Early years violence prevention sites

This initiative, funded through Budget 2019, aims to build on and grow community-led innovations to prevent and mitigate harm experienced by children exposed to family violence and sexual violence. This will be achieved by:

  • building on existing early years services by prototyping practical activities to improve wellbeing for children who are exposed or at risk of exposure
  • testing ways of working across sectors and with community, iwi and non-government partners, to better understand and implement the system-level changes for children in the early years.

Lead agency: Family and Sexual Violence Joint Venture

Timeframe: From 2019


Family violence prevention: increased investment

In Budget 2019 Government has increased investment in broader family violence prevention activities, including:

  • E Tū Whānau, which uses a strengths-based approach to help reduce family violence and other forms of violence in Māori communities, and also works with refugee and migrant communities in culturally appropriate ways to increase their wellbeing and diminish harm
  • Pasefika Proud, which harnesses the transformative power of Pacific core cultural values and frameworks to address violence in Pacific communities
  • The Campaign for Action on Family Violence, which addresses changing the behaviour of men who are violent or  at risk of using violence, with a new focus on young people and safe relationships.

Government is also supporting implementation of Atu-Mai, New Zealand's first national violence prevention programme for Pacific young people. This family-focused and community-led programme is delivered by Le Va in collaboration with Synergia and the Accident Compensation Corporation.

Lead agency: Family and Sexual Violence Joint Venture

Timeframe: From 2019

Find out more


Violence prevention needs of diverse communities

Budget 2019 provided funding for work to understand the needs of diverse communities in order to develop future violence prevention programmes. This includes youth, the LGBTQIA+ (rainbow) community, disabled people, new migrants, and older people.

Lead agency: Family and Sexual Violence Joint Venture

Timeframe: From 2019

Find out more 


Government work programme to prevent online child sexual exploitation and abuse

Haumaru Tuiho is a programme to prevent online child sexual exploitation and abuse. The programme is being led by the Department of Internal Affairs and is part of Government's work to implement the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child. The programme includes measures targeting potential offenders, and supports children and young people, parents and guardians.

Budget 2019 provided funding for the New Zealand Customs Service to enhance services to combat child sexual exploitation across the cyber border. This initiative aims to reduce the creation and distribution of abuse imagery, reduce the number of children who are sexually abused, and prevent further abuse of previously abused children.

Lead agencies: Department of Internal Affairs, New Zealand Customs Service and New Zealand Police

Timeframe: From 2019

Support victims and their families and whānau

Build safe, consistent and effective responses to family violence in every community

This initiative, funded through Budget 2019, supports continued development and testing of current programmes for victims, families and whānau affected by family violence and safe and consistent responses where and when families and whānau need them.

In particular, the initiative will:

  • extend the Integrated Safety Response (ISR) sites (in Christchurch and Waikato) for two more years; this includes funding for specialist family violence services
  • extend the Whāngaia Ngā Pā Harakeke sites in Counties Manukau and Gisborne and Whiria Te Muka sites in Kaitaia for two more years
  • pilot proximity alarms to help keep victims and their families and whānau safe
  • develop national case management systems to support triage, risk assessment and management processes.

Lead agency: Family and Sexual Violence Joint Venture

Timeframe: From 2019

Find out more


Improve regional capability to respond to family violence

This initiative, funded through Budget 2019, aims to provide victims, families and whānau affected by family violence with safe and consistent responses, where and when they need it.

This will be achieved through building the foundations for an effective response in every part of New Zealand. The initiative will enhance regional capability across the country to respond to family violence and begin consistent implementation of a national response by: supporting more integrated family violence crisis responses, providing practice leaders to build practice standards and support professional development and training, and ensuring specialist frontline service providers participate fully in risk assessment and triage processes.

Lead agency: Family and Sexual Violence Joint Venture

Timeframe: From 2019


Sexual violence crisis support services for children and young people

This initiative, funded through Budget 2019, provides access to sexual harm crisis support services designed specifically for children and young people.

Crisis services include immediate support to reduce the severity and longevity of the negative impact of sexual harm and promote the safety and wellbeing of the child or young person in their family, whānau and community.

Lead agency: Family and Sexual Violence Joint Venture

Timeframe: From 2019

Find out more


Develop kaupapa Māori services for victims/survivors, perpetrators and their whānau

Budget 2019 provided funding to develop whānau-centred kaupapa Māori specialist sexual violence services. Services will be developed by Māori for Māori and include comprehensive responses to sexual violence, from prevention and early intervention through to long-term support. The funding will also address the current geographical gaps in service delivery by supporting more kaupapa Māori providers to develop specialist sexual violence service capability.

Lead agency: Family and Sexual Violence Joint Venture

Timeframe: From 2019


Improve Justice response to victims of sexual violence

A set of initiatives are being developed to reduce the risk of sexual violence victims experiencing further trauma when participating in the criminal justice process. It will be achieved by enabling complainants to give evidence in alternative ways (including by pre-recorded video), ensuring help is available for complainants and witnesses to understand and respond to questions in court, and providing specialist training to equip lawyers to use best practice in sexual violence cases.

Lead agency: Family and Sexual Violence Joint Venture

Timeframe: From 2019

Find out more

Supporting actions

  • Increase access to crisis support services for victims/survivors: This initiative, funded through Budget 2019, aims to reduce the severity and duration of trauma-related symptoms experienced by victims/survivors of sexual violence. There will be more funding for crisis support services for victims/survivors of sexual violence and their families and whānau. This will ensure services are available 24/7 at a level that meets current demand. Services will include specialist callout support, crisis counselling and crisis social work support.
  • Improve the wellbeing of male victims/survivors of sexual violence through peer support services: Budget 2019 provided funding to reduce the severity and duration of trauma-related symptoms experienced by male victims/survivors of sexual violence. Current access to peer support and group-peer support services for male victims/survivors will be expanded.
  • Health sector screening for early intervention and prevention of family violence: Training for health practitioners in district health boards to routinely deliver effective screening and referrals will continue, and the provision of a training programme for primary health care providers (including GPs, nurses, and dental nurses) is being considered.

Improve the quality of State care

Oranga Tamariki Action Plan

As required by the Children's Act 2014, children's agencies will develop an Oranga Tamariki Action Plan. This will set out how they will work collectively to achieve wellbeing outcomes for children and young people of interest to Oranga Tamariki. This will include actions to support whānau and families and to ensure children and young people are safe and supported.

The action plan must set out how agencies will achieve the six outcomes set by the Child and Youth Wellbeing Strategy.

Lead agency: Oranga Tamariki

Timeframe: Developed over 2019


Implementation of National Care Standards

The National Care Standards are intended to significantly improve the quality of care and support for children and young people in State care, and their families, whānau and caregivers. Budget 2019 provided funding to:

  • build frontline capacity and capability to provide quality care and support for children and young people in State care, and their families, whānau and caregivers
  • deliver high-quality services and support that address children's and young people's individual needs
  • find and retain high-quality caregivers, and train and support them to provide safe, stable, loving homes for children and young people in their care
  • build placement capacity for very-high-needs children and young people, whose therapeutic needs may not be able to be met in whānau care or traditional foster care.

Lead agency: Oranga Tamariki

Timeframe: From 1 July 2019

Find out more


Improve outcomes for Māori children and young people within the Oranga Tamariki system

Oranga Tamariki is committed to delivering better outcomes and reducing disparities for Māori across its services. For example, this will be achieved by working alongside iwi and Māori organisations to support whānau to stay safely together at home through intensive intervention services, the delivery of responsive transition support services for young Māori, and new whānau care partnerships to increase the number of Māori caregivers.

Lead agency: Oranga Tamariki

Timeframe: From 2019

 

Children and young people have what they need

This means:

  • they and their parents/caregivers have a good standard of material wellbeing
  • they have regular access to nutritious food
  • they live in stable housing that is affordable, warm and dry
  • their parents/caregivers have the skills and support they need to access quality employment.

Focus areas and key actions

The Government's focus for this outcome is on reducing child poverty by improving the material wellbeing of households living in poverty and hardship. This focus has the potential to break the cycle of disadvantage and intergenerational poverty as well as affect many other wellbeing outcomes. Government passed the Child Poverty Reduction Act 2018 which requires the government of the day to set targets on a set of child poverty measures and to report against these. Actions are grouped in the following focus areas.

  • Improve earnings and employment. Government has committed to progressively increasing the minimum wage to $20 per hour by April 2021. It is also increasing employment support through Ministry of Social Development, and support for people with disabilities and health conditions to find and stay in meaningful employment.
  • Create a fairer and more equitable welfare system. Government is: implementing the Families Package to improve incomes for low- and middle-income families with children; overhauling the welfare system, taking into account the recommendations of the Welfare Expert Advisory Group; indexing main benefits to wages; and removing the sanction under section 192 of the Social Security Act 2018, which reduces Child Support for a sole parent who does not identify the other parent of a child.
  • Improve housing affordability, quality and security. There are a range of initiatives including 6,400 new public housing places by 2022, bringing in quality standards for rental homes, subsidising insulation and heating, strengthening Housing First to address chronic homelessness, and increasing funding for transitional housing support.
  • Help families with the cost of essentials. Budget 2019 included several initiatives aimed at reducing the cost of essentials for families, including a prototype for a free school lunch programme, additional funding for schools to replace donations, and funding to cover the cost of NCEA (National Certificate of Educational Achievement). Budget 2018 provided funding to extend free GP visits and prescriptions to children under the age of 14.

More detail on the Government's policies and actions under this outcome are provided in the tables below.

Improve earnings and employment

Increase the minimum wage to $20 per hour by 2021

The Government has committed to progressively increase the minimum wage to $20 by April 2021. It increased the minimum wage from $15.75 to $16.50 per hour in April 2018, and then to $17.70 from April 2019.

These changes are a part of this Government's wider workplace relations policy platform, which backs fair pay and conditions, and ensures those on lower incomes get to share New Zealand's economic prosperity.

Lead agency: Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment

Timeframe: The Government has set an indicative minimum wage of $18.90 for 2019 and $20 per hour for 2021. These increases will be confirmed through the annual minimum wage review process.


Increase employment support through the Ministry of Social Development

Budget 2019 provided funding for the Ministry of Social Development to increase case management at the frontline, enabling staff to work more intensively to help more people into meaningful and sustainable work.

Lead agency: Ministry of Social Development

Timeframe: From 2019


Support for disabled people and people with health conditions

This initiative, funded through Budget 2019, supports people with disabilities and health conditions to find and stay in meaningful employment, increase their knowledge and skills, and improve their health and wider wellbeing. This includes funding to continue and build on the Oranga Mahi programme, which integrates employment and health supports and services. Only a third of disabled young people (15-24 years) participated are in paid work. The rate of disabled young people not in employment, education, or training is 42.3 percent, over four times that of non-disabled young people (10 percent).

Lead agency: Ministry of Social Development

Timeframe: From 2019

Supporting actions

  • Government response to Fair Pay Agreement Working Group report: Detailed policy work and consultation is under way to prepare Government's response to the report. Government expects its response will lead to action to lift wages, working conditions and productivity in New Zealand. Fair pay agreements would set minimum standards to lift wages and conditions in a particular industry or occupation.
  • Government response to Joint Working Group on Pay Equity Principles: In 2018 Government introduced the Equal Pay Amendment Bill. The Bill will improve the process for raising and progressing pay equity claims, and eliminate and prevent discrimination in the remuneration and employment terms and conditions for work done within female-dominated jobs.The Bill will describe what a pay equity claim is and introduce a new process for working through them.

Create a fairer and more equitable welfare system

Continue to implement the Families Package to boost incomes of families with children

Increase to Working for Families: Family Tax Credit payment rates have increased, particularly for children under 15 years. The Working for Families income threshold has also been raised. The income threshold determines the income level at which payments start to reduce (abate). This increased the level of financial assistance available for low-income families with children.

Accommodation Supplement changes: There is an increase to the maximum amount paid for the Accommodation Supplement over its four different areas to better reflect housing costs. In addition, places where housing costs have increased the most were moved up into different Accommodation Supplement areas with higher maximum payments.

Best Start payment: There is a new Best Start tax credit to help families during a child's early years. A payment of $60 per week is available for each child born on or after 1 July 2018 and is available to all families in the first year of a child's life.  For the second and third years of a child's life, support will continue for low- and middle-income families (abated at 21 percent for families with an annual income above $79,000). 

Implement the Winter Energy Payment: This helps older New Zealanders and many of the poorest families to heat their homes over winter. The payment provides beneficiary couples or those with dependent children an additional $31.82 a week. The Winter Energy Payment was paid from July to September in 2018 and from May to October from 2019 onwards.  

Lead agencies: Ministry of Social Development, Inland Revenue and Ministry of Housing and Urban Development

Timeframe: Measures implemented from April to July 2018

Find out more


Overhaul the welfare system

The Government's vision is for a welfare system that ensures people have an adequate income and standard of living, are treated with respect and can live in dignity, and are able to participate meaningfully in their communities.

The Government is taking forward a multi-year work programme to overhaul the system in line with this vision, which will take into account the recommendations of the Welfare Expert Advisory Group. The three priority areas where the Government is taking immediate action to address the recommendations are:

  • addressing financial support with a focus on child wellbeing
  • supporting people who are unable to be earning, learning, caring or volunteering
  • improving access to affordable housing.

Lead agency: Ministry of Social Development

Timeframe: From 2019

Find out more


Index main benefits to wages

From 1 April 2020, main benefit rates will be increased each year in line with wage growth, rather than inflation (consumers price index). As wage growth is generally higher than inflation, this will provide additional financial support for beneficiaries. This change will ensure rates of main benefits are maintained relative to wages in society. 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.

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.

Lead agency: Ministry of Social Development

Timeframe: Implemented April 2020

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Repeal section 192 of the Social Security Act 2018

Government will remove the sanction under section 192 of the Social Security Act 2018 (previously S70A).  Currently, if a sole parent does not identify the other parent of the child and applies for Child Support they are subject to a benefit reduction. By removing this sanction, around 12,000 sole parents will have their incomes increased by an average of $34 a week, and around 24,000 children will be better off.

Lead agency: Ministry of Social Development

Timeframe: Implemented April 2020

Supporting actions

  • Changes to abatement settings: Government will increase the amount that people on a main benefit can earn through employment before their benefit is reduced (known as abatement), in line with planned increases in the minimum wage. This will enable part-time working beneficiaries, including sole parents, to keep a greater proportion of their private earnings. It will also benefit some low-income working families (who become eligible for more support through the Accommodation Supplement or the Minimum Family Tax Credit).
  • Complete the review of the treatment of child support for beneficiaries: Government will complete the current review of the treatment of child support for beneficiaries, and in particular whether the Crown should 'pass on' payments to sole parents on state-provided benefits, rather than withholding them to offset the cost of the benefit.

Improve housing affordability, quality and security

6,400 new public housing places

The Government has committed to bringing on 6,400 additional public housing places by 2022. This includes an indicative 3,550 places in Auckland and 2,850 in other regions of New Zealand.

Lead agency: Ministry of Housing and Urban Development

Timeframe: Delivered by 2022

Find out more


Implement Healthy Homes Standards

The Healthy Homes Guarantee Act 2017 requires quality standards for rental housing.  The Healthy Homes Standards set minimum quality standards for residential rental homes, covering improvements to heating, insulation and ventilation, moisture ingress and drainage, and draught stopping. The Government committed funding in Budget 2018 to implement and monitor the Healthy Homes Guarantees Act 2017 and to collect data on housing quality.

Lead agency: Ministry of Housing and Urban Development

Timeframe: Compliance will be phased in between July 2021 and July 2024. Timing of compliance depends on the type of tenancy.

Find out more


Warmer Kiwi Homes programme

Warmer Kiwi Homes is a four-year programme that offers grants to cover two-thirds of the cost of ceiling and underfloor insulation. The programme also provides capped grants for heat pumps, wood burners and pellet burners from July 2019. Government-funded grants are topped up wherever possible by funding from community organisations.

Homeowners with a Community Services or SuperGold Combo Card, families referred by the Ministry of Health's Healthy Homes Initiative, and those living in a lower-income area may qualify for a grant under this programme.

Lead agencies: Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment, and Energy Efficiency and Conservation Authority

Timeframe: Insulation grants from 1 July 2018, Heating grants from 1 July 2019

Find out more


Strengthening Housing First

Housing First is a highly successful, internationally proven way to house and support chronically homeless people or homeless people with multiple, complex needs. Housing First finds housing for a person irrespective of their condition (such as mental illness or sobriety). It also provides wraparound support and services, for as long as needed, to help them stay housed and improve their lives.

In Budget 2018, Government provided significant funding to increase the number of places and expand to new locations as its main response to chronic homelessness in New Zealand. Budget 2019 funding will strengthen the programme in existing high-need cities and regions: Whangarei, the mid-far North, Auckland, Hamilton, Rotorua, Tauranga, Hawke's Bay, Wellington and the Hutt, Nelson, Blenheim, and Christchurch.

Lead agency: Ministry of Housing and Urban Development

Timeframe: Contracts with providers under way and currently being implemented

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Funding for continued provision of transitional housing

Transitional housing provides short-term housing for up to 12 weeks for people with immediate housing needs, along with support to help them find long-term homes. Transitional housing places are managed by specialist providers who are skilled in providing social support services, tenancy-related support, and managing properties and tenancies.

Government increased funding for transitional housing, to increase the number of places, in Budget 2018, and in Budget 2019 funded the continued provision of transitional housing for people in need.

Lead agency: Ministry of Housing and Urban Development

Timeframe: From Budget 2018

Find out more

Supporting actions

  • Rental Tenancies Act 1986 reform: This targeted reform to the Residential Tenancies Act 1986 has the primary objective of increasing tenants' security of tenure, while maintaining adequate protection of landlords' interests.
  • Papakāinga development: This Budget 2019 initiative provides funding for the Māori Housing Network to invest in additional papakāinga (Māori collectively owned homes), housing repairs, and capability building programmes. It will raise Māori intergenerational wellbeing by taking a whānau-led approach to addressing housing and wider community needs.
  • Financial capability services to support Pacific households into homeownership: This Budget 2019 initiative aims to improve the home ownership rate of Pacific people. It provides Pacific households with financial capability services to help them achieve their home ownership aspirations.
  • Housing Support Products: More funding for Housing Support Products was made available through Budget 2019, including increasing the number of existing grants that can be issued and adding a rent arrears payment.

Help families with the costs of essentials

Free school lunch programme prototype

A free school lunch programme will be implemented from Term 1 2020, with a small number of schools and increasing to approximately 21,000 students by 2021. The prototype will test and evaluate different models of delivery and provide information to support decision-making about further provision of free school lunches beyond 2021.

Lead agencies: Ministry of Education, Child Poverty Unit

Timeframe: Prototype implemented from Term 1, 2020

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Additional funding for schools to replace donations from parents/caregivers

Decile 1-7 state and state-integrated schools (attended by about 63 percent of all students, including 83 percent of Māori and Pacific students), will be eligible to receive $150 per student per year if the school agrees to stop requesting donations from parents and caregivers.  This Budget 2019 initiative aims to alleviate financial pressure on families who struggle to pay school donations, as well as benefitting eligible schools by providing them greater certainty of revenue or increased revenue.

Lead agency: Ministry of Education

Timeframe: From the 2020 school year

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Removal of NCEA (National Certificate of Educational Achievement) fees

Budget 2019 provided funding to cover the cost of NCEA assessment fees for all students. This supports equity of access to NCEA qualifications and increases residual incomes for low-income families.

Lead agency: Ministry of Education

Timeframe: From 2019

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Implement lower-cost primary health care, including free GP visits for under-14- year-olds

Funding in Budget 2018 reduced barriers to health care by extending:

  • free GP visits and prescriptions to children under the age of 14 so that cost is not a consideration for parents and caregivers
  • access to very low-cost GP visits to all Community Services Card holders, making doctor visits approximately $20 to $30 cheaper for an estimated 540,000 people
  • eligibility for Community Services Cards to all those receiving the accommodation supplement or income-related rent subsidy.

Lead agency: Ministry of Health

Timeframe: From 2018

Find out more

Supporting actions

  • Improved Whānau Ora navigator support for whānau to build their financial capability: Budget 2019 provided funding for training to Whānau Ora navigators to expand their financial capability skills, understanding and networks, so they can provide improved support to whānau wanting to build their financial capability.
  • Continued government funding for KickStart Breakfast and KidsCan: Through Budget 2019 Government committed two more years of funding to support the provision of raincoats, shoes and hygiene and sanitary products, and food to children in need.
  • Investigate cheaper public transport for low-income households: Budget 2019 provided funding to investigate a scheme to reduce public transport costs for Community Services Card holders. Central and local government are working together to understand the potential cost of the scheme and how and when it can be rolled out.
  • Review consumer credit law: Government is making law changes to the Credit Contracts and Consumer Finance Act 2003 following a review in 2018 of consumer credit law. These changes will ensure consumers are protected from irresponsible lending practices and high-cost loans.
  • Review the treatment of debt to government: The Minister for Social Development intends to review current regulations and practices around benefit debt, and work with other Ministers on the recommendations of the Welfare Expert Advisory Group and the Tax Working Group on debt to government agencies.
  • Commerce Commission changes: The Commerce Act 1986 has been amended to allow the Commerce Commission to carry out competition studies. The first is a study into retail fuel markets (petrol prices), with a final report due by 5 December 2019. Government is also reviewing section 36 of the Commerce Act 1986 to better enable the Commerce Commission to study markets that are not functioning effectively and may be suppressing competition.
  • Response to the Electricity Price Review 2018-2019: Government commissioned an expert advisory panel to investigate whether the electricity prices paid by households are fair, efficient and equitable. Following public consultation, the panel provided its final recommendations to Government in mid-2019.

 

Children and young people are happy and healthy

This means:

  • they have the best possible health, starting before birth
  • they build self-esteem and resilience
  • they have good mental wellbeing and recover from trauma
  • they have spaces and opportunities to play and express themselves creatively
  • they live in healthy and sustainable environments.

Focus areas and key actions

Government is prioritising work to improve mental wellbeing, along with work on the maternity system and support in the early years. Actions are grouped in the following focus areas.

  • Redesign maternity and early years support. Government is undertaking significant work to improve the universal maternity and Well Child Tamariki Ora services. It is also expanding the Pregnancy and Parenting Service, which provides intensive support to parents and parents-to-be, and caregivers experiencing problems with alcohol and other drugs and who are poorly connected to health and social support services.
  • Inspire active, healthy and creative children and young people. Healthy Active Learning is a new initiative to support healthy eating and quality physical activity in schools, kura and early learning settings. Government is also extending and enhancing nurses in schools (School-Based Health Services) in secondary schools, implementing its Strategy for Women and Girls in Sport and Active Recreation, and launching a Creatives in Schools programme.
  • Increase support for mental wellbeing. Government is working to transform the approach to mental health and addiction, in response to the report of the independent Inquiry into Mental Health and Addiction. Budget 2019 investment starts to lay the foundations for a transformed approach to mental wellbeing and includes: funding to expand access to primary mental health and addiction support (including in youth settings), improved forensic mental health services for young people, and wellbeing resources for primary and intermediate schools. Government is also developing a suicide prevention strategy, which will include a focus on young people.

More detail on the Government's policies and actions under this outcome are provided in the tables below.

Redesign maternity and early years support

Maternity Whole of System Action Plan

Maternity services are being redesigned through this five-year, end-to-end maternity programme to ensure New Zealand's maternity system is effective, sustainable, and is, and remains, world class. The Plan will:

  • develop a flexible commissioning model for primary community maternity services care, as an alternative to the current model of section 88 of the New Zealand Public Health and Disability Act 2000
  • strengthen leadership and develop an annual, national agenda for quality, safety and equity in the maternity system
  • improve continuity of care in the maternity system
  • address availability gaps, and access issues so that the maternity system meets the needs of all who are pregnant, and their families and whānau
  • develop and implement a new approach to maternity consumer engagement
  • partner with Māori to deliver whole-of-system improvements in maternity
  • stabilise the system-wide maternity workforce and ensure it reflects the demand, beliefs and needs of the population, and stabilise the midwifery workforce through retention and recruitment
  • develop a specific work programme supporting improved maternal and infant mental health outcomes
  • review and revise the model for pregnancy and parenting resources, education and support so that it allows flexibility for different types of education (such as kaupapa Māori, Pacific models of care, Whānau Ora) ensuring it works for those with complex needs
  • engage in cross-sector and community wellbeing projects at local, regional and national levels
  • refresh the National Strategic Plan of Action for Breastfeeding 2008-2012.

Lead agency: Ministry of Health

Timeframe: From 2019


Review of the Well Child Tamariki Ora programme

The Well Child Tamariki Ora (WCTO) programme that ensures child wellbeing by providing health and development checks to all children from birth to five years of age, is currently being reviewed. The programme includes B4 School Checks and earlier core checks which provide key developmental measurement and assessment touchpoints with families and whānau, and monitor a child's health and development from birth and across their preschool years. If issues are identified, additional support can be provided including referrals to more specialised services such as vision, hearing and behavioural support.

The review is looking at the extent to which the programme is currently meeting the needs of children and their families and whānau, what is working well and what needs improvement. It will assess and redesign the funding, contracting and service delivery model to ensure the programme is financially sustainable and delivering the best possible outcomes for babies, children and families and whānau.

The Ministry of Health is working jointly with district health board partners and Māori, with input from WCTO providers and other social service agencies (including the Ministry of Education and Oranga Tamariki). They will produce recommendations and a plan of action to contribute to improved and equitable outcomes for all children and families and whānau; and to deliver an accessible, integrated, and whānau-centred service that supports families and whānau at touchpoints as their children grow.

This work contributes to the development of a universal health and development contact framework across Health and Education - an integrated measurement and assessment schedule from conception to 24 years of age to support maternal, child and youth wellbeing.

Lead agency: Ministry of Health

Timeframe: From 2019

Find out more


Intensive parenting support: expanding the Pregnancy and Parenting Service

Budget 2019 provided funding to expand this intensive outreach service for parents and parents-to-be, and caregivers who are experiencing problems with alcohol and other drugs, and who are poorly connected to health and social support services. The service will expand from four to six sites. 

Lead agency: Ministry of Health

Timeframe: From 2019

Find out more

Supporting actions

  • Update of Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD) Action Plan: The Ministry of Health and partner agencies have developed a framework to update the FASD Action Plan and make current systems more responsive to the needs of children and young people living with FASD and their families and whānau. Actions focus on prevention and early identification, increasing the awareness and understanding of FASD across agencies, and building an evidence base of FASD prevalence.
  • Initial work towards a single measurement and assessment schedule from conception to age 24: Health and social sector agencies have a work programme to better integrate information, advice and support services for parents, families and whānau. The Ministries of Health and Education have started work to develop a single system of assessment and screening for the health and development of all children and young people. , which can make the right check at the right time and offer the right service response. The Ministry of Health will continue to build on the Universal Health and Development Contact Framework, developing health contacts from age 5 to 24 years. The intention is that this work will result in one joint Health and Education shared measurement and assessment schedule that will eventually encompass conception to age 24.

Inspire active, healthy and creative children and young people

Healthy Active Learning

Healthy Active Learning is a new initiative funded through Budget 2019 that will support schools, kura and early learning settings to improve child and youth wellbeing through healthy eating and quality physical activity.

All schools, kura, and early learning settings will be supported with new resources, ranging from health promotion advisors, school physical activity advisors, and curriculum resources and guidelines. Implementation will focus on expanding healthy food and water-only or plain milk policies, enhancing delivery of the health and physical education curriculum, and fostering active school environments.

Lead agencies: Ministry of Health, Ministry of Education, Sport New Zealand

Timeframe: From Budget 2019

Find out more


Extend nurses in schools (School-Based Health Services)

School-Based Health Services provide free access to primary health care, including mental health, for students from Year 9 in low decile secondary schools. Students can either go to a health professional in their school, or be referred to youth health services, child youth mental health services, or their own doctor.

Budget 2018 funding extended School-Based Health Services to all decile 4 secondary schools. Budget 2019 provided further funding to enhance these services; beginning expansion to all decile 5 secondary schools and consolidating the existing programme.

Lead agencies: Ministry of Health, Ministry of Education

Timeframe: From Budget 2018


Delivery of Strategy for Women and Girls in Sport and Active Recreation

The strategy, launched in October 2018, has a strong focus on girls and young women across its three priority areas: leadership, participation, and value and visibility.  Sport New Zealand will deliver initiatives in partnership with the community.

In April 2019 Sport New Zealand launched two new funds under the strategy: the Young Women's Activation Fund and the Innovations for Young Women Fund. Organisations can apply for support for new opportunities to encourage young women aged 12-18 to stay active and develop their leadership skills.

Lead agency: Sport New Zealand

Timeframe: 2018-2021

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Creatives in Schools

Budget 2019 provided funding for a Creatives in Schools programme to be delivered to schools and kura. Professional artists and creative practitioners will partner with schools to share specialist artistic knowledge and creative practice with students.

Lead agency: Ministry of Education

Timeframe: 2020-2024

Find out more

Supporting actions

  • Expand bike programmes in schools: In November 2018 Government announced funding over three years to expand the Bikes in Schools programme (which involves installing a riding track in school grounds and typically also provides bikes, helmets and bike storage facilities) and to increase cycle skills education nationwide.
  • Local Government (Community Wellbeing) Amendment Bill: In May 2019 the Government passed new legislation to restore the four 'wellbeings' (social, economic, environmental and cultural well-being of communities) to the statutory purpose of local government. This acknowledges local government's valuable role in promoting wellbeing, including child and youth wellbeing.
  • Toi Rangatahi arts funds: Creative New Zealand launched three new funds in 2019 to support arts projects to help young New Zealanders (aged 10 to 25) to participate in, to lead, or to engage in high-quality arts projects and activities in their own communities.

Increase support for mental wellbeing

Expand access and choice of primary mental health and addiction support

Budget 2019 provided funding to enhance primary mental health and addiction responses across New Zealand to expand access and choice of mental health and addiction support, in particular for New Zealanders with mild to moderate needs.

The Ministry of Health will carry out an extensive process to co-design services that meet the specific needs of people in different regions. Māori, people with lived experience of mental health and addiction, Pacific peoples, young people, the rainbow community and people living in rural areas will be represented in the co-design process.

Greater access to services and more choice about the kinds of support available are a core part of this work, including in kaupapa Māori organisations, Pacific organisations, general practices, and community and youth settings.

Lead agency: Ministry of Health

Timeframe: From 2019

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Forensic mental health services for young people

Budget 2019 provided funding to ensure safe and secure forensic mental health services are available to young people. This responds to the legislative change increasing the youth justice age from 17 to 18 years, resulting in more young people within the youth justice system.

Lead agency: Ministry of Health

Timeframe: From 2019


Suicide prevention strategy

Government has committed to developing a national suicide prevention strategy focused on the needs of particular groups. This will include a focus on children and young people.

Lead agency: Ministry of Health

Timeframe: From 2019

Find out more


Promote wellbeing in primary and intermediate schools

Budget 2019 investment will make resilience-building and mindfulness resources more readily available to primary and intermediate schools and teachers across the country.

Lead agency: Ministry of Health

Timeframe: From 2019

Find out more

Supporting actions

  • Piki pilot expansion: The pilot, launched in Porirua in February 2019, provides free counselling and age-appropriate mental health support for young people aged 18 to 25 years with mild to moderate mental health conditions. The pilot will be fully operational across the Wellington region by the end of 2019 and will run until 2021.
  • Āta Hihiko: Āta Hihiko is customised technology that aims to motivate small behaviour changes to build aspiration, good habits, resilience, and mental and emotional well-being in young Māori. It is being run as a trial with 100 young Māori.

 

Children and young people are learning and developing

This means:

  • they are positively engaged with, progressing and achieving in education
  • they develop the social, emotional and communication skills they need as they progress through life
  • they have the knowledge, skills and encouragement to achieve their potential and enable choices around further education, volunteering, employment and entrepreneurship
  • they can successfully navigate life's transitions.

Focus areas and key actions

Government has launched a programme of review across the education sector - early learning (including home-based), compulsory schooling, learning support and tertiary education - to improve equity and ensure no-one misses out. An immediate priority is children and young people who need extra support in the education system. Actions are grouped in the following focus areas.

  • Improve quality in education. A statement of National Education and Learning Priorities (NELP) is being developed that sets out the Government's priorities for early childhood and compulsory education. Budget 2019 provided funding to improve data about student progress and learning support needs. Work is also being done to reform home-based early childhood education and vocational education.
  • Increase equity of educational outcomes. The Learning Support Action Plan and increased funding for learning support will improve outcomes for children and young people who need extra support in the education system. Government has a medium-term focus on using the Equity Index to provide more equitable resourcing to schools and kura. It has also funded an initiative to improve education outcomes for Pacific learners, and introduced the Fees-Free Tertiary Education and Training policy.
  • Support life transitions. This includes a new service for to support young people as they transition out of care or youth justice settings, and a range of programmes to support young people into employment or training.

More detail on the Government's policies and actions under this outcome are provided in the tables below.

Improve quality in education

Statement of National Education and Learning Priorities

The statement of National Education and Learning Priorities for early childhood and compulsory education will set out the Government's education and learning priorities for all early learning settings (including ngā kōhanga reo), schools and kura.

Lead agency: Ministry of Education

Timeframe: End of 2019

Find out more


Address learners' needs by improving data quality, availability, timeliness and capability

This initiative provides a data system that enables a joined-up approach to data about student progress and their learning support needs throughout their schooling.

Lead agency: Ministry of Education

Timeframe: From 2019


Response to the review of home-based early childhood education

The focus of this action is a gradual shift towards requiring home-based educators to hold at least a level 4 ECE qualification, to improve the quality of educator-child interactions in home-based early childhood education. Evidence suggests that an ECE qualification supports educators to provide children with stimulating, warm and supportive early learning experiences.

Budget 2019 provided funding to tertiary providers to enable the existing educator workforce to upskill to a Level 4 ECE qualification.

Lead agency: Ministry of Education

Timeframe: From 2018

Find out more


Reform of vocational education

The Government is reforming the vocational education and training system. Consultation has been completed on three proposals to fundamentally reform vocational education. These proposals involve changes to the roles, structures and funding of all vocational education organisations, to create a vocational education system that meets the needs of employers and learners today and ensures that New Zealand is ready for the skills requirements and expectations of learners and employers in the future.

To do this, the Government is considering creating one system for all vocational education where:

  • all vocational education organisations will have clear roles and uphold and enhance Māori-Crown partnerships
  • public vocational education will be available consistently throughout New Zealand via a single national Institute of Skills and Technology
  • there will be a single funding system that focuses everyone on the right things.

Lead agency: Ministry of Education

Timeframe: Changes likely to be phased in from 2020

Find out more

Supporting policies and actions

  • Education portfolio work programme: The education system is being substantially reviewed. Throughout 2018 significant engagement, including with youth, took place to inform the future direction. Decisions have yet to be made but Government will ensure alignment between the Strategy and education review processes which include:
    • He taonga te tamaiti | Early Learning Strategic Plan 2020-2029 – will set out a planned approach to develop and strengthen the early learning sector, to meet the needs of all children and their families and whānau
    • National Certificate of Educational Achievement (NCEA) Review – is exploring options to strengthen NCEA, the key qualification for secondary school leavers, so it best meets student needs
    • Tomorrow's Schools Review – is reviewing whether the compulsory schooling system meets the needs and aspirations of children, young people and their whānau now, and for the future
    • Tertiary Education Strategy – will set out the Government's current and medium-term priorities for tertiary education and training
    • Education Workforce Strategy – will plan for a capable, valued, connected and supported workforce that is culturally conscious and learner focused
    • Curriculum, Progress and Achievement work programme – is strengthening the approach to understanding progress across the schooling curricula
    • Māori Education Strategy – will develop a long-term approach to equitable outcomes for Māori in the education system and embed it across all developing strategies and reviews. It includes a refreshed Kā Hikitia, an implementation plan, and developing a systems approach to addressing racism and bias
    • Pacific Education Action Plan – will develop a shared vision and measurement system, and contribute to a whole-of-system approach to solving the challenge of persistent inequity for Pacific children and young people in education.

Increase equity of educational outcomes

Equity Index

Medium-term work is under way to better understand and target socio-economic disadvantage, and provide more equitable resourcing to schools and kura. This includes replacing the current decile funding system with the Equity Index.

Lead agency: Ministry of Education

Timeframe: To be confirmed

Find out more


Improve learning support: Learning Support Action Plan

Government has developed the Learning Support Action Plan and increased funding for learning support to improve outcomes for children and young people who need extra support in the education system. Budget 2019 provided funding for these key actions:

  • New Learning Support Coordinators: Approximately 600 Learning Support Coordinators will support schools and kura to better identify and respond to the disability and learning support needs of children and young people and facilitate seamless transitions, including from early learning to school.
  • Increase access to and modernise child development services: Improve the health and social outcomes of children who are not meeting their developmental milestones (due to physical or sensory impairments, neuro-disabilities like autism, or other factors) and have additional needs.
  • Increase learning support funding in line with population growth and demand: Help maintain timely and quality support for children and young people with additional learning needs, primarily for those with moderate needs.
  • Address critical cost and demand pressures for children and young people: Ensure children and young people with learning support needs receive timely and quality support.
  • Create a more inclusive education system: System improvements, including an enhanced package of support for gifted learners and continued support for the Te Kura Big Picture programme for students most at-risk of disengaging from education.

Lead agency: Ministry of Education

Timeframe: 2019-2025

Find out more


Improve and accelerate education outcomes for Pacific learners

This initiative works to ensure that Pacific learners and their families have their identities, languages and cultures valued and respected and have the skills, knowledge, and equitable opportunities to pursue any educational pathway. This will be done by partnering with communities to focus on achieving outcomes for Pacific learners, growing the cultural competency of the workforce, and providing opportunities to learn in Pacific languages.

Lead agency: Ministry of Education

Timeframe: From 2019


Fees-Free Tertiary Education and Training

Government introduced the Fees-Free Tertiary Education and Training policy in January 2018. Eligible students beginning study at a university, wānanga, institute of technology, polytechnic, or private training establishment, can now get their first year of full-time study fees-free, or an equivalent amount of part-time study fees-free. New apprentices and their employers can have their on-job training costs covered for their first two years. The intent is to remove financial barriers for people to go onto further study or training.

Lead agency: Tertiary Education Commission

Timeframe: From 2018

Find out more

Supporting policies and actions

  • Digital Technologies for All Equity Fund: Through Budget 2018 Government established this fund, which gives less-advantaged students better access to digital tools, skills and knowledge.

Support life transitions

New service for transition support out of State care or youth justice custody

Oranga Tamariki is providing increased support to eligible young people leaving State care or youth justice custody, to provide a more gradual and supported transition to adulthood, up to the age of 25.

Budget 2019 provided funding for this new transition support service. The service is relationship-based, and will support young people to prepare for transition, respond to their needs as they leave, and help them gain their independence. It will provide advice and assistance, after-hours support, and broker services and housing support.

Lead agency: Oranga Tamariki

Timeframe: From 1 July 2019

Find out more


Programmes for young people not in education, employment or training (NEETs)

Budget 2019 provided funding to expand programmes that enhance education and employment outcomes for young people:

  • Mana in Mahi - Strength in Work: Government provides a wage subsidy to employers that hire young people (aged 18-24 and who have been on a benefit for six months or more) and help them to work towards a Level 4 qualification and to transition into sustainable work. Budget 2019 funding will expand the pilot of 150 people to offer an additional 1,850 places over four years.
  • Pacific Employment Support Service: Providers are contracted to work with and support Pacific young people NEETs and engage directly with Pacific families and communities to ensure Pacific young people NEETs are supported into employment and training. Budget 2019 funding will expand the service into wider Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch.
  • He Poutama Rangatahi: Budget 2019 provided additional funding for this initiative that supports communities to develop pathways (poutama) for rangatahi (young people aged 15 to 24 years) who are NEETs and take them through to sustained employment, underpinned by intensive pastoral care.

This builds on funding committed by Government in 2018 for He Poutama Rangatahi programmes and these initiatives:

  • Pae Aronui: A new initiative to enhance skills and employment opportunities for rangatahi Māori aged 15-24 who are NEETs. Pae Aronui targets urban areas of South and West Auckland, Hamilton, Porirua and the Hutt Valley as they have the highest number of Māori rangatahi who are not in employment, education or training, and with the highest projected employment growth rates.
  • Taiohi Ararau: Passport to Life: Government provided funding to expand this programme for taiohi aged 15-24 who are NEETs. Through the programme, participants can access essential documents including a birth certificate, bank account, driver's licenses, or an IRD number.

Lead agencies:

  • Mana in Mahi: Ministry of Social Development
  • Pacific Employment Support Service: Ministry for Pacific Peoples
  • He Poutama Rangatahi: Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment
  • Pae Aronui and Taiohi Ararau: Te Puni Kōkiri

Timeframe: From 2018

Supporting policies and actions

  • School Leavers' Toolkit: Government is developing a package of tools, resources and targeted curriculum support for educators to increase opportunities for students aged 13 to 18 to develop civics knowledge and skills, financial literacy and key workplace competencies before they leave school. Tools include a website and the development of ways to credential Toolkit learning.
  • Driver license scheme for young people on youth benefits or in care: Government meets the costs of getting a driver license for young people receiving the Youth Payment, Young Parent Payment or in Oranga Tamariki care. The scheme covers costs such as obtaining a birth certificate for identification, professional driving lessons and test fees.
  • Expand Limited Service Volunteer programme: Government is doubling the number of participants in this free “work readiness” training course for 18-24 year-olds (with some 17 year-olds able to attend by exception). The course is a six-week residential course delivered by the New Zealand Defence force, with support from the Ministry of Social Development and the New Zealand Police.

 

Children and young people are accepted, respected and connected

This means:

  • they feel accepted, respected and valued at home, school, in the community and online
  • they feel manaakitanga: kindness, respect and care for others
  • they live free from racism and discrimination
  • they have stable and healthy relationships
  • they are connected to their culture, language, beliefs and identity, including whakapapa and tūrangawaewae (place of belonging).

Focus areas and key actions

  • Address racism and discrimination. Officials are developing a work programme that will aim to address racism and discrimination, including through policy and legislative processes. Government has also restarted Te Kotahitanga to support equitable outcomes for Māori learners by addressing cultural bias and racism in the education system (Te Hurihanganui) and supporting whānau to engage in the education of Māori learners (Mana Whānau).
  • Increase a sense of belonging and cultural connections. Government is implementing Maihi Karauna - The Crown's Strategy for Māori Language Revitalisation, which identifies all New Zealanders under 25 as a priority group. Te Ahu o Te Reo Māori will improve te reo Māori ability in the education workforce and is the start of Government's plan to better integrate te reo Māori across the education system. Budget 2019 provided funding to implement legislative changes that require specific considerations for tamariki and rangatahi Māori in the Oranga Tamariki system. Actions to support Pacific languages and culture include developing an action plan for Pacific Aotearoa Lalanga Fou, and funding for projects to support Pacific realm languages.
  • Encourage positive and respectful peer relationships. Government will work to prevent bullying in schools and is expanding a relationships programme in secondary schools.

More detail on the Government's policies and actions under this outcome are provided in the tables below.

Address racism and discrimination

Government work programme to address racism and discrimination

Officials are developing a work programme that will aim to address racism and discrimination, including through policy and legislative processes; for example, by ensuring that the Treaty of Waitangi (Te Tiriti o Waitangi), and anti-racism and anti-discrimination considerations are built into advice to Ministers, and Cabinet and Parliamentary processes.

Lead agencies: Ministry of Education, Ministry of Justice

Timeframe: From 2019


Restart Te Kotahitanga: supporting equitable outcomes for Māori learners

Te Kotahitanga aims to support equitable outcomes for Māori learners by addressing cultural bias and racism in the education system (Te Hurihanganui) and supporting whānau to engage in the education of Māori learners (Mana Whānau).

This will be done by testing and evaluating initiatives that support education professionals to enhance classroom practice and whole-of-school culture. It will also test and evaluate initiatives that support whānau to engage in the education of their children and young people and enable iwi and Māori organisations to facilitate and broker this engagement.

Lead agency: Ministry of Education

Timeframe: From 2019

Find out more

Supporting actions

  • Review approach to hate speech: Government has begun work to review the approach to hate speech. It is expected that proposals for public consultation will be developed by the end of 2019.

Increase sense of belonging and cultural connections

Implement Maihi Karauna - the Crown's Strategy for Māori Language Revitalisation

Government released Maihi Karauna - the Crown's Strategy for Māori Language Revitalisation 2019-2023 in August 2018. Maihi Karauna identifies all New Zealanders under 25 as a priority group.

Maihi Karauna sets out what the Crown will do to support a strong, healthy, thriving Māori language in New Zealand. All government agencies are required to develop a te reo Māori language plan by 30 June 2021.

Budget 2019 provided funding for Te Taura Whiri to lead the coordination of the implementation of Maihi Karauna, and funding to support national and regional events that promote the use of te reo Māori.

Implementation will be staged, from 2019-2023, with a full cross-government implementation plan released in September 2019.

Lead agency: Te Puni Kōkiri

Timeframe: From September 2019

Find out more


Te Ahu o Te Reo Māori

Te Ahu o Te Reo Māori will empower and grow an education workforce that can integrate te reo Māori into the learning of all ākonga (learners) by 2025.

It will encourage and strengthen the education workforce to use te reo Māori correctly every day. It is designed to improve all levels of Māori language ability in the education workforce. Staff can participate in kura reo-style learning with support from a group of te reo Māori experts, some of which will be delivered through wānanga and online learning support.

This is the start of Government's plan to better integrate te reo Māori across the education system, ensuring the workforce can comfortably use some level of te reo Māori correctly with students and, over time, increasingly incorporating te reo Māori into teaching practices and programmes.

Lead agency: Ministry of Education

Timeframe: Implemented 2019

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Action Plan for Pacific Aotearoa Lalanga Fou

In 2017 and 2018, Government engaged with thousands of Pacific people to develop the Pacific Aotearoa Lalanga Fou report, which refreshes the Ministry for Pacific People's Pacific vision set in 1999. 'Confident, thriving and resilient Pacific young people' is one of the four goals of Pacific Aotearoa.

The Ministry for Pacific Peoples is developing an action plan and deliverables with government agencies and stakeholders that align to the goals of Pacific Aotearoa.

Lead agency: Ministry for Pacific Peoples

Timeframe: January to December 2019

Find out more


Funding to support Pacific realm languages

Deliver projects in three regions (South Waikato, Wellington, and Auckland) over four years to support Pacific learners and families from the New Zealand realm countries of Niue, the Cook Islands and Tokelau, to support competencies in Pacific realm languages and English, and to successfully transition into schooling. This includes brokering access to evidence-based initiatives and developing language resources in te reo Māori Kūki Āirani, gagana Tokelau and vagahau Niue.

Lead agency: Ministry of Education

Timeframe: 2019-2023


Implement section 7AA of the Oranga Tamariki Act 1989

Legislative changes that came into force on 1 July 2019 require specific considerations for Māori children and young people.

The Chief Executive of Oranga Tamariki has duties in relation to the Treaty of Waitangi (Te Tiriti o Waitangi) to develop strategic partnerships with iwi and Māori organisations, and ensure policies, practices and services have regard for the principles of mana tamaiti, whakapapa and whanaungatanga. The Chief Executive also has a duty to ensure that policies and practices have the object of reducing disparities by setting measurable outcomes for Māori children and young people. The Chief Executive is required to report annually on these duties.

Budget 2019 provided funding to:

  • expand Kairāranga (specialist Māori roles in sites) to support the active participation of whānau in decisions affecting tamariki who come into the Oranga Tamariki system
  • focus on developing strategic partnerships with iwi and Māori organisations to enable these organisations to be actively involved in meeting the needs of Māori children, young people and their whānau.

Lead agency: Oranga Tamariki

Timeframe: From 1 July 2019

Find out more

Supporting actions

  • Increase engagement with te reo Māori across a range of media platforms: Budget 2019 provided funding to support the revitalisation of te reo Māori and the goals of the Maihi Karauna Strategy through increasing engagement with te reo Māori on broadcast and online platforms. This content will have a focus on rangatahi audiences, and will be delivered across a range of platforms.
  • Te Kawa Matakura: This project includes developing a unique Tohu Mātauranga qualification, the criteria for describing strategic outcomes and graduate profiles, and confirm the assessment approach for participants to become graduates. Te Kawa Matakura is another step forward in the education system's recognition of the value of Māori knowledge. It will enable Māori achievement by investing in students who display excellence in mātauranga Māori. Rangatahi Māori will be able to develop the skills, knowledge and capabilities to participate confidently in te ao Māori, New Zealand society and as global citizens.
  • Pacific language support - Ministry for Pacific Peoples: The Ministry is establishing a new set of internal language support functions to ensure the survival of Pacific languages among New Zealand's Pacific communities. This will focus on supporting revitalisation, research and community-led initiatives.
  • Support Te Rūnanga Nui O Ngā Kura Kaupapa Māori: This initiative aims to improve outcomes for Māori learners attending kura kaupapa Māori. This will be done by providing funding to Te Runanga Nui o Nga Kura Kaupapa Māori to better undertake its kaitiaki (guardianship) and kaitautoko (advocacy) functions.
  • Tuia - Encounters 250: Budget 2018 boosted funding for the national commemoration marking 250 years since the first onshore meetings between Māori and Europeans. The additional funding will support a national voyaging event from October to December 2019, with opportunities for hundreds of young people to participate while the vessels are at sea. Funding will also provide a national education programme for schools and a supporting community education programme.
  • HEIHEI: In 2018 NZ On Air and TVNZ launched HEIHEI, New Zealand's first free (and ad-free) online media platform for children's content. The platform reflects a commitment to connecting children to local content, and promotes diversity and inclusion.

Promote positive and respectful peer relationships

Initiatives to prevent and respond to bullying in schools

Supporting evidence-based initiatives to prevent and respond to bullying.

Lead agency: Ministry of Education

Timeframe: From 2019

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Expanding healthy relationships programmes in secondary schools

The Accident Compensation Corporation is supporting expansion of a programme that teaches secondary students the knowledge and skills to engage in safe, healthy and respectful relationships. It is being scaled up to be available to all secondary schools who would like to sign up to the programme.

Lead agency: Accident Compensation Corporation

Timeframe: 2019-2020

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Supporting policies and actions

  • Support uptake of Loves-Me-Not: Loves-Me-Not is a 'whole-school approach' to prevent relationship abuse and promote healthy relationships among senior secondary students. Loves-Me-Not includes a one-day workshop facilitated by Police, school staff and relevant local non-governmental organisations. Police will continue to support the uptake of Loves-Me-Not as it continues to grow.

 

Children and young people are involved and empowered

This means:

  • they contribute positively at home, at school and in their communities
  • they exercise kaitiakitanga: connection and care of the land and nature
  • they have their voices, perspectives and opinions listened to and taken into account
  • they are supported to increase autonomy as they age and to be responsible citizens
  • they and their families are supported to make healthy and informed choices around relationships, sexual health, alcohol, tobacco and other drugs.

Focus areas and key actions

  • Increase child and youth voice and participation. A Youth Plan is being developed to ensure youth voice is heard and acted on across government. Government is also running a Youth Health and Wellbeing Survey to improve knowledge about young people's health and wellbeing, and launching a Youth Voice Project, to look at innovative ways to connect young people into government policy decisions and outcomes.
  • Advocate for children and young people's rights. This includes building public service competency and capability in children's rights and implementing the Child Impact Assessment Tool across government. Government is also strengthening independent oversight of Oranga Tamariki and strengthening the system for advocacy on behalf of children and by children.
  • Encourage positive choices and contributions. Youth justice initiatives will provide greater support for young people detained in custody. Government is implementing Paiheretia te Muka Tāngata, which uses a Whānau Ora approach to support Māori in the Corrections system. Budget 2019 funding will increase services to support children and young people with concerning or harmful sexual behaviours.

Increase child and youth voice and participation

Youth Plan

This plan will ensure youth voice is heard and acted on across government, to drive the development of policy alongside young people and enable change.

Focus population groups include Māori and Pacific young people, disabled young people, young women, rainbow youth, young people from ethnic communities, and rural young people.

Lead agency: Ministry for Youth Development

Timeframe: From 2019

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Youth Health and Wellbeing Survey - What About Me?

The Youth Health and Wellbeing Survey will collect data from 14,000 young New Zealanders and will provide information on what it is like to be a young person in New Zealand.

The survey builds on the Youth 2000 survey series. It will survey young people aged 12 to 18 from a stratified national sample of secondary schools (and other providers) and from youth service providers.

Data from the survey will improve knowledge about young people's health and wellbeing, and will help inform progress on the Child and Youth Wellbeing Strategy over time.

Lead agency: Ministry of Social Development

Timeframe: From 2019

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Youth Voice Project

This project explores ways to build meaningful, two-way communication channels between young people and the Government. It will look at innovative ways to begin connecting young people into government policy decisions and outcomes.

Lead agency: Ministry for Youth Development

Timeframe: From 2019

Supporting policies and actions

  • Strengthening a youth voice in policy: A range of measures is being adopted to increase youth voice in decision-making. These include:
    • Youth Advisory Group for the Minister of Education: Government implemented the Group to enable young people to have their say and have more influence on the education system and issues that affect them.
    • Establishment of Youth Advisory Panel: The Office of Film and Literature Classification has established a Youth Advisory Panel. The panel, shared with the Police, advises on a variety of projects on classification decision-making and research, and how they affect young people.
    • Establishing a youth voice in environmental policy work: The Ministry for the Environment is looking at how it communicates with youth and how it can open channels for youth to feed their views into its work programmes, with an initial focus on climate, water, and the review of the resource management system.
  • Emerging work plan on civic participation: The Office of Ethnic Communities (Department of Internal Affairs) is looking at the current state, and the barriers and opportunities around civic participation involving ethnic communities. This will likely focus on three components: democratic/political processes; engagement with government, local government and council; and volunteering.

Advocate for children and young people's rights

Strengthen independent oversight of Oranga Tamariki system and children's issues

Government is strengthening independent oversight of the children's system. It is also strengthening the system for advocacy on behalf of children and by children.

Budget 2019 provided funding for the Ministry of Social Development to establish and operate a new regulatory monitoring function for services to children under the Oranga Tamariki Act 1989. The Ministry will operate the monitoring function and report back to Ministers in mid-2020. The intention is to transfer the function to the Office of the Children's Commissioner once the function is running effectively.

Government has also agreed the Office of the Ombudsman will provide an enhanced complaints oversight and investigations function relating to the Oranga Tamariki system.

Changes will also ensure strong advocacy around the rights and interest of children, for children's voices to be heard by decision-makers, and for there to be avenues for children, parents/caregivers, families and whānau to raise concerns or complaints.

Lead agencies: Ministry of Social Development, Office of the Children's Commissioner

Timeframe: 2019-2021

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Implement the Child Impact Assessment Tool across government

The Child Impact Assessment Tool will be finalised and implemented across government agencies.

Lead agency: Ministry of Social Development

Timeframe: From 2019

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Build public service competency and capability in children's rights

As part of its work programme to implement the Convention on the Rights of the Child, Government has committed to develop training for public servants on children's rights and the Convention.

Lead agencies: Ministry of Social Development, Office of the Children's Commissioner

Timeframe, From 2019

Encourage positive choices and contributions

Investment in community-based youth justice facilities

From 1 July 2019, 17-year-olds were included in the youth justice system in most circumstances. Alongside this, changes are planned to the way young people are detained in custody. It is a priority that as few young people as possible are remanded in youth justice facilities. New ways of managing young people waiting for their court proceedings to be finalised are being established.

Budget 2019 provided investment in a new type of small, community-based youth justice facility, designed and operated through partnerships, including with iwi and Māori organisations. They provide a home-like environment to support rehabilitation and mirror community life, and facilitate and encourage close family and whānau connections. In current youth justice facilities, practice changes are being made to achieve some of these same objectives. Government is also working to support young people who offend into education and employment, including introducing new vocational training programmes into residences.

Lead agency: Oranga Tamariki

Timeframe: From 1 July 2019

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Paiheretia te Muka Tāngata initiative: Whānau Ora support for Māori in the Corrections system

Paiheretia te Muka Tāngata - Uniting the Threads of Whānau, based on the Whānau Ora approach, aims to build and maintain strong relationships between whānau and young Māori (under 30 years old) who are in the Corrections system.

The initiative recognises the importance of whānau in improving individual wellbeing. It will be delivered through a specialist Kaiarataki Navigator workforce to support offenders and their whānau, from pre-sentence to rehabilitation and reintegration into the community.

The initiative will begin at the Hawke's Bay Regional Prison from May 2020, with the plan to expand to the Northland Region Corrections Facility. Budget 2019 provided funding to Te Puni Kōkiri, Corrections and Ministry of Social Development to co-design and implement this initiative.

Lead agencies: Te Puni Kōkiri, Department of Corrections, Ministry of Social Development

Timeframe: Implementation from May 2020

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Increased services for children and young people with concerning/harmful sexual behaviours

This initiative, funded through Budget 2019, aims to increase child wellbeing through increased service capacity to meet demand for prevention, education, early intervention, assessment and treatment services for children and young people who display concerning and harmful sexual behaviours.

This includes ensuring services (including assessments, treatments and preventative initiatives) can be delivered in a kaupapa Māori context and are suitable for those with behavioural problems, intellectual disabilities or neuro-disabilities.

Lead agency: Family and Sexual Violence Joint Venture

Timeframe: From 2019

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Next steps

The Current Programme of Action focuses on issues that will have significant impact on improving child and youth wellbeing. It is a starting point that the Government has committed to build on. 

The accompanying Strategy sets a long-term direction to unify efforts across government and society to improve child and youth wellbeing.  It makes headway on addressing complex problems, consistent with what New Zealanders identified as important during engagement. A single strategy and programme of action cannot solve the challenges of child and youth wellbeing all at once. Government will undertake ongoing outreach and engagement as work under the Strategy proceeds.

The Current Programme of Action will be updated as new actions are developed to address gaps as well as new areas of focus.

The Strategy itself will be reviewed at least every three years (as required by the Children's Act 2014) following further public consultation, including consultation with children, the Children's Commissioner, the Minister for Māori Development, and Māori.

 

Last updated: 
Thursday, 29 August 2019