Families Commission restructuring
28 May 2012
Dunne welcomes Families Commission restructuring
UnitedFuture leader Peter Dunne has welcomed the restructuring of the Families Commission, saying the new focus on independent monitoring, evaluation and research, and providing annual Family Status Reports brings it far closer to its original purpose.
“I am on the record as saying the Families Commission lost its way early on under Labour administrations that milk-sopped it into a politically correct institution,” Mr Dunne said.
“The changes announced by Social Development Minister Paula Bennett today – in line with UnitedFuture’s confidence and supply agreement with National – go a long way to giving it the purpose it was meant to have from the beginning.
“The model we always had in mind was a Families Commission that did for families what Treasury does for the economy – monitoring, evaluating and researching – and these moves bring it far closer to that,” he said.
Mr Dunne said the changes announced today – including production of an annual Family Status Report – had been essentially agreed with Prime Minister John Key in coalition negotiations after last November’s election.
“We live in a frenetic, fast-changing world, and families are buffeted by constant social and economic changes. We know it, but we do not have enough research and hard-nosed evidence. These changes will help remedy that and sharpen the focus on what families face and what they need.
“That is going to be crucial in helping shape government policy and legislation in the years ahead.
“The Families Commission was never about building empires. The restructured model will refocus on understanding what families need and what they face. It is a good move for New Zealand,” Mr Dunne said.