Candidates address employment and training opportunities, issues
With the general election fast approaching, South Waikato News reporter Caitlin Wallace continues to find out what the issues are in the district and what the electorate candidates can bring to the table.
Billboards with grinning politicians will not affect Andrea Rout’s vote, for her it is all about the policies.
The 51-year-old was not quick to point out faults in any political party. She said it was what they had done right that mattered.
‘‘I’m voting for National, they just stand for the basic core values,’’ she said.
But the caregiver was not willing to bad mouth the competition.
‘‘Going back to their main policies, Labour focuses on employment . . . they did do a little good for me when they were in power.’’
South Waikato News asked Rout what she thought could be improved in the district.
‘‘I would love the opportunity to train and work in a shop . . . it would be good to have night classes you could do every now and again . . . training costs are a problem though, this isn’t a wealthy community,’’ she said.
She wants a second a chance at a career but knows jobs are not easy to come by.
‘‘ I’ve struggled with employment most of my life,’’ she said.
Response from candidates in the Taupo and Te Tai Haua¯ ru electorates
Chris McKenzie – Ma¯ ori Party
We are launching our education policy this week and it will include help for those with young children, opportunities to develop entrepreneurial skills in our rangatahi and adult literacy skills for those second chance learners. We are also supporting free public transport for students, First in Wha¯ nau scholarships for a bachelor level qualification, learning hubs for communities that target wha¯ nau engagement in learning and local Ma¯ ori histories as a compulsory part of the curriculum.
We will build on the gains made while we have been in Govern- ment by doubling Ma¯ ori and Pasifika trade training from 3000 to 6000 placements a year and securing $2.5 million a year for 250 Ma¯ ori Affairs cadetships for unemployed Ma¯ ori. Louise Upston – National We are boosting the subsidy rates to help keep fees affordable for parents, and more money is going towards supporting ECE ( early childhood education) services that work with children from our most vulnerable communities.
Through our Business Growth Agenda we want to convert a couple of years of good economic growth into a sustained lift in our economic performance that benefits New Zealand long term.
Our Business Growth Agenda focuses on the six key inputs large and small businesses need to be successful – export markets, innovation, capital markets, skilled and safe workplaces, infrastructure and natural resources.
An additional 83,000 jobs were created in New Zealand in the year to June, and we’re on track for about 150,000 new jobs by mid-2018. Jamie Strange – Labour Labour will reduce class sizes, and in doing so hire 2000 more teachers.
Remove school donations through funding schools $100 per student per year if they don’t demand donations from parents, scrap National Standards, increase funding to adult and community education and repeal charter schools legislation.
Our policies will encourage businesses to invest, innovate, and create good, secure jobs for Kiwis ( especially those in the regions).
We’ll reduce unemployment to 4 per cent within three years, increase the minimum wage to $15 an hour in our first 100 days and raise it again to $16.25 in 2015. We will also pay the dole to employers to fund apprenticeships for unemployed New Zealanders.