Friday, February 22, 2008

WINZ breaks law when getting drunk drivers' cars back

The Ministry of Social Development appears to be breaking its own law in allowing payments to be approved to get cars back after being impounded due to drivers' unlawful activity.

Judith Collins was questioning Social Development Minister Ruth Dyson about why beneficiaries can get aassistance after their car has been impounded for drunk driving. Dyson said beneficiaries can get an advance payment of their benefit or a special-needs grant if
they have an immediate and essential need. Work and Income staff will consider all the circumstances, including the effect of the situation on the person’s family or children, whether the person himself or herself can afford to pay, and whether the person will be able to afford the repayments.

Sounds fair. They need to get their car back and can't afford to. But Dyson conveniently missed one vital bit of information out, and nobody appeared to notice.
The Chief Executive may consider the extent to which the Applicant has caused or contributed to the .. situation that has given rise to the particular immediate need.
I would have thought that if the police impound a car because a person was drunk behind the wheel, then the applicant contributed to the situation by breaking the law and driving over the limit, and that the Ministry should take that into acount.

Do you?




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