The number of people on benefits has fallen to the lowest level since July 2009 says Social Development Minister Paula Bennett.
There are now 320,954 people on benefits, down by 2,000 in the last month, representing around 12 per cent of working age New Zealanders.
There are 58,000 people on Sickness Benefits and 99,000 sole parents on the Domestic Purposes Benefit.
“It is pleasing to see the number of people on Unemployment Benefits has fallen in the past month to 51,422,” says Mrs Bennett.
This is also the lowest figure recorded since June 2009.
“The number of young people on Unemployment Benefits fell by nearly 1,000 to 14,080 in April, dropping by 9,500 in total since the peak in January 2010.”
Over the last year, the number of people on Unemployment Benefits in Canterbury has fallen by 30 per cent, with total benefit numbers in the region down by 14% since the February 22 earthquake.
“Every month on average 7,000 New Zealanders go off welfare into work.”
In April alone, more than 2,000 young people (18-24) cancelled their benefits because they found work.
“This Government’s welfare reforms put a greater emphasis on being work-ready so that as more jobs become available people will be ready to take them up,” says Mrs Bennett.
07 May 2012