September 26, 2017
One in four Maori in precarious state
A new book is challenging the way growing numbers of New Zealanders are forced to live from paycheck to paycheck or benefit payment to benefit payment.
Precarity: Uncertain, insecure and unequal lives in Aotearoa New Zealand puts a local face to a growing international body of work about the rise of the precariat.
Editor Bridgette Masters-Awatere says one in six New Zealanders including one in four Maori are now living in precarious situations.
They include the poor, unemployed, elderly, disabled, homeless, students, and refugees.
She says a welfare system where people don’t get what they are entitled to, and get penalised if they try to take steps to lift themselves out of poverty, needs to change.
"There’s that mentality you've just go to work harder to get through but you just can't work harder when you are working your hardest to survive so people need to change their attitude that a one-off hand out is going to get you out of a precariat situation. There is an ongoing need for support that shouldn't come at the cost of your integrity and your self esteem," Ms Masters-Awatere says.
Precarity is published by Massey University Press
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