Social Services & Employment
UnitedFuture believes that work is a good, for society and for individuals. Having a job boosts self-esteem and a sense of personal dignity. That’s why UnitedFuture’s policies are practical, with the goal of suitable employment for all who want them.
It is UnitedFuture policy to:
- Encourage all young people under 25 who are not at at school to either be 'earning or learning' (i.e. in some form of education/training or work).
- Pay premiums to not-for-profit agencies who find sustained employment for the unemployed, with higher rates available for placing clients facing greater barriers to employment.
- Ensure that sickness and invalids beneficiaries seek treatment for their incapacity where this is appropriate as a condition of their benefit, and make funding available to provide treatment where it is likely to hasten their return to work.
- Closely monitor the effectiveness of enhanced case management approach currently applied to domestic purposes recipients, to ensure that they move into appropriate employment as their children get older.
- Establish regional employment initiatives that arrive at local solutions to the specific causes of unemployment in communities, with a clear focus on getting people into jobs.
- Ensure that jobseekers have access to vacancies in other regions, and increase relocation grants for those who have to move to take up employment
- Increase funding for adult literacy programmes, and ensure that every community education centre runs such programmes
- Fund training programmes that are specifically targeted at up-skilling older New Zealanders who find themselves out of work.
- Support a campaign aimed at employers to break-down any negative perceptions of older workers, migrants and those with disabilities.
- Prioritise funding for those vocational courses that develop skills and provide qualifications in fields facing shortages, resulting in lower fees for trainees.
- Establish a specific employment placement service for refugees.
- Review the operations of NZQA to ensure that the process of formally recognising migrants’ skills is effective and efficient.
- Ensure that advice and information is available to businesses to support them in hiring migrants to fill skill shortages, and support migrants with workshops and training to learn about the Kiwi work environment.
- Develop a global online service that matches potential skilled migrants with job opportunities in New Zealand to help fill critical skill shortages, and develop regional immigration programmes allowing regions to meet skill needs where positions cannot be filled within New Zealand.
- Take a proactive approach to skills shortages through promotional events in overseas target markets with high proportions of skilled people
- Assess those who have been unemployed for a year or more for work readiness. If they are not work-ready then they will be referred to training and other services (e.g. health) that will help them to be. If they are work-ready they will undertake part-time work on a community project or for a voluntary agency of their own choosing, or they will be placed in wage-subsidised employment, where they will receive in-work training. Priority for wage-subsidised places will be given to the older unemployed and those with disabilities.
- Allow for the ‘micro-management’ of a small group of beneficiaries who struggle to budget and pay for the basics of living to ensure that these basics are being met, especially for households with children (ensuring that utilities are paid, children are clothed, school fees are paid)
- Ensure that the proper allowances are given to those that Government has designed for them, by funding the Citizens Advice Bureau and other similar legal and community assistance services to give independent advice and advocacy on such issues.