No child should have to go without essentials because government departments are creating and collecting debt that was always going to be unaffordable. Debt to government is creating distrust and harm for whānau that are trying to engage with the systems that are meant to support them.
FinCap welcomes this work on the proposed framework for debt to government (Proposed Framework). Issues with debt to government are regularly raised by financial mentors. Inconsistencies and errors within the current system need urgent attention as they are currently causing, and have caused for decades, harm to whānau across Aotearoa.
We strongly recommend that clear policy and legislative changes be urgently implemented in line with this framework to address the issues that are causing the most harm. Future work that complies with this framework must prevent money from continuously being taken from the pockets of whānau, especially during this time of added cost-of-living pressure.