I worked hard, but I may lose my home*** what do Labour's researchers do? ***
Bruce Burgess lost his $750 per week job in the recession and was turned away from WINZ because his partner worked part time. She earns $21,000 a year. WINZ turned them away,and so they wrote to their MP who so happens to be the Prime Minister.
When he got the letter he reportedly flicked it off to Paula Bennett's office who did nothing.Then the Labour Party found out about it. Instead of checking the Burgess' entitlements and assisting them, Labour told the NZ Herald who wrote this story. On the surface, it needs to be fixed up because it is appalling.I spoke with the reporter early this afternoon and told him that the family is entitled to a partial benefit.
If they are earning just $21,000, WINZ was wrong to turn them away. They are entitled to register as job seekers through WINZ and are entitled to $91.20 a week in an unemployment benefit as well as possibly an accommodation supplement to assist them with their mortgage. Couldn't the Herald find that out? Depending on their mortgage they may be entitled to further assistance. I've relayed that info on to Keys office.
Given that Labour leaked this story, I'm wondering if its pixie researchers do any research. It's latest media release says that Burgess' wife's income disqualifies the couple from any temporary access to the unemployment benefit.
That's false. And Labour now know it.
update Burgess claims to own several properties, but is not receiving income from them. And I see that John Key has relayed the above in Parliament, and while I was doing this post the Herald updated its story. I spoke with the journalist and requested he do so because the facts of the story were incorrect given entitlement of a benefit on $21k.
update2 And Labour knew all along that the Burgesses owned multiple properties but apparently never told the Herald.