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Policy Watch Newsletter

November 06, 2015 at 8:57 AM

Policy Watch 5th November 2015

*Click here to read online*

Kia ora tātou katoa

Welcome to Policy Watch and for this edition we reflect on the triumph of the All Black’s back-to-back win of the Rugby World cup 2015 –  the skills of the players, the managerial expertise behind the team, the no expense spared resources, the whole-of-public support of the team, and the fabulous celebrations across the country – and we imagine the same feeling of triumph when Team New Zealand wins the Child Wellbeing cup and 260,000 children are no longer represented in the Child Poverty Monitor. Meanwhile, let’s enjoy the All Black’s win and reflect on the learnings.

What’s in this edition:

NEWS FROM THE SECRETARIAT

NZCCSS has a new Strategic Plan [2015 -2018]. Hope, Positive Change, Lived Experience, Voice and Resilient are the new strategic imperatives that will underpin the work of the Council and Secretariat. Read about this journey in Trevor’s articleBeing Smart about What we Do.

There are more professional accoldes for Lisa Woolley, CEO, VisionWest. Not only did Lisa win the Australiasian Housing Institute Awards for Outstanding Achievement Award for Professional Excellence in Housing (New Zealand division), but she was also voted Overall AHIA winner, 2015.

Treasury is reaching beyond its usual boundaries as part of its Treasury Guest Lecture Series and featuring a range of NZCCSS members. Trevor McGlinchey shared insights from Outcomes Plus: The Added Value Provided by Community Social Services research project, Rev Tric Malcolm, presented on the Wellington Soup Kitchen and Wellington, and Laura Black gave a lecture on the Methodist Mission’s Southern’s experience of change using measurement, evaluation and outcomes.

WHAT DOES THE DATA SAY?

The Community Investment Strategy signals a sea change to the way in which community-based social services are funded by MSD. New tools are needed to navigate these waters and Tangata Whenua Community and Voluntary Sector Research Centre has stepped into the breach. The What Works Website aims to provide a resource to the community sector to support the gathering of robust data that can provide the evidence to ‘demonstrate’ funded outcomes have been achieved.

The latest Children’s Action Plan Newsletter provides a glimpse into the themes emerging in one of its Teams (Hamilton) and we find it reads like an excerpt from the NZCCSS Vulnerability Report series. “They’ve started supporting vulnerable children and their families and are finding consistent themes of financial pressure, overcrowded housing arrangements and family violence alongside health and education issues”.

INEQUALITY

Wellington City Council (WCC) has voted 9-6 to extend an $18.55 (per hour) living wage to contracted security workers. At the time there were some internal concerns about insufficient funds in the kitty to increase the hourly rate of low income workers, while maintaining higher end salaries, but Max Rashbrooke’s opinion piece and analyses seems to have contributed to the Council’s decision and the world as we know hasn’t collapsed. Who’s next to introduce the living wage?

More on Max Rashbrooke with his latest contribution to the inequality debate: Wealth and New Zealand published by Bridget Williams Books.

Statistics New Zealand has released the Labour Market Statistics Sept 2015 quarterand the labour market isn’t looking that flash [Employed people down 0.4%, Unemployed people up 6%, Labour force participation down 0.7%]. It puts the current welfare reforms policy in a bit of a pickle given its sole reliance on a growing job market to lift people out of poverty. Might be time to re-think options.

LEGISLATION UPDATE

It seems that home support workers who work with older people and people with disabilities in the community are another step closer to being paid for both the time and the travel costs between clients. The Home and Community Support (Payment for Travel Between Clients) Settlement Bill is in Parliament and the Health Select Committee is hearing submissions over the coming weeks and is scheduled to report back to Parliament in mid-April 2016.

A new Easter Trading Bill has been introduced into Parliament. Catholic social justice agency Caritas has voiced strong concerns.

RESOURCES

The Social Policy Evaluation and Research Unit (SUPERU) has released Integrated Social Services for Vulnerable People, as part of its What Works series. The paper brings together information on the effectiveness of integrated social services, including what is known about how, when, and for whom integrated social services are most effective

The CHA 2015 conference: Making Community Housing Happen.The Impact Conference has received great feedback from around the sector. The latest newsletter contains highlights from the conference and links to the speakers’ presentations.

WHAT’S ON

Hospice West Auckland is hosting a two day Spirituality Symposium, featuring Dr Bruce Rumbold (16-17 Nov 2015). Day One : Spirituality in Hospice Care: Making it Integral and Day Two: Culture and Spirituality: A Day of Exploration.

Social Service Providers Aotearoa is rolling out new self-care workshop designed for social services sector workers at all levels (Wellington 20 Nov 2015 and Auckland 27 Nov 2015). Participants will identify and problem-solve stress in the workplace and elsewhere.  

Hikoi for Homes 21st November – don’t forget to get along in support of the CPAG campaign for better homes for all children.