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435 posts

Ultimate Geek
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  Reply # 687686 18-Sep-2012 12:53 Send private message

PaulBrislen:
sleemanj: "I never had such problem, therefore your problem must be of your own doing."  is a pretty typical response from people when it comes to socio-economic issues, people have neither the ability nor desire to see the situation from the other side.  

But even if we for the sake of argument just say "ok, it's the parents fault", that solves nothing, sure you can teach a man to fish, but if he dies of starvation while you're doing it then YOU have failed miserably, not them.

If providing funded meals in schools means children are better educated, and healthier, then DO IT.  No mucking around, no hand wringing, or finger pointing, just do it, why is it even a question.



This

As for the price, we can't afford not to. I think Campbell Live costed it at $4m a year... can anyone confirm? If so, that's peanuts. That's one dollar each person PER YEAR.

Labour priced it at around $21m I think - but even then we're talking about less than the price of a coffee per person per year at the outside.

This shouldn't even be a discussion, we should just get on and do what all civilised countries do - feed our kids.




Umm, no. There approx. 1.6m tax payers in NZ. So at $4m per year thats a few dollars per person.

And when have Campbells Lives figures been used for calculating anything? On what basis did they arrive at those calculations? And using Labours figures of $21m (which I still wouldn't trust as no Government in opposition ever gets these calculations right) you're talking maybe $15-20 per tax payer per year. Now take out working for families and other tax incentives which see low income families effectively not paying any tax we might be talking $30-50 per year (at a guess - couldn't be bothered working it out as unless you're in government you don't need to be accurate and even then...). But thats not the point.

The point is is that it's not the schools job to fed kids. Its the parents. Make sure they know how. Make sure they're not being frivolous with their money. And then. Only then would I say lets help them feed the kids.

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  Reply # 687687 18-Sep-2012 12:54 Send private message

sleemanj:
BraaiGuy: 
Poverty? I laugh every time I hear this word being thrown around in NZ. Been living here for 5 years and never seen it.


The term is relative.  

Just because in another country poverty means living in a shanty town where you're doing well if you have a tin shack instead of a cardboard box, it does not mean that our poor are not "below the poverty line" in New Zealand.  

As the average standard of living increases, the level below which we define as poverty also increases.  This is desirable, otherwise if left to continually drift apart the leap between poverty as you would describe it, and the "average" standard of living in our society, just becomes ever more insurmountable.  


Poverty in NZ is defined as a household living on less than 60% of the median wage.

By that definition we will always have poverty in NZ.

Poverty is something that can be gotten rid of. It should not be a comparison to the median wage otherwise what exactly are we trying to achieve?










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Master Geek
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  Reply # 687699 18-Sep-2012 13:11 Send private message

Here's a win-win solution. 

It gets the kids fed, educates the parents, and avoids the argument of the (long suffering) taxpayers that the state ought not to be providing for the children when they are already being implicitly provided for by way of DPB, WFF, Accommodation Supplements, etc, etc.

Have the government fund the purchase price of the food and arrange for it to be delivered to each of the schools.  Have the parents prepare the meals for their children at school.  (you would need to keep prep areas open for parents between 7-9am and 4-6pm to enable them to contribute without impacting their ability to work)  The parents can choose to either provide their own lunch for their child, or prepare one from the food provided at the school...  If they fail to do either one - it gets treated as child abuse / neglect.

Simple Smile   (where is the tongue in cheek smiley?)


...of course, the liberal hand-wringers are likely to be upset that the solution isn't simply to increase the funding of the parents...  But in retrospect - that hasn't worked out for the past 20 years, you'd have to be insane to believe that it would work now.

...of course, the free-market, right-wing extremists will argue that it's just more welfare dressed up in a different way.  The key difference is that it's an enabler - not a handout. (and there's an implicit obligation to actually contribute)


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  Reply # 687703 18-Sep-2012 13:20 Send private message

sleemanj:
Lias: There might be some genuine cases, but most of the so called child poverty is greedy selfish parents, wanting luxuries for themselves at the expense of their kids diets.


As you say, "at the expense of the kids diets", so even if "greedy selfish parents" is the problem, should we allow this to disadvantage the child?  

Obviously the answer for any right minded person here is "no".  So at that point you need a solution.

If you have a better solution than "feeding kids at school", that'd be great!

"Educating parents" is not a solution, it's probably not going to work, it's going to take too long (as in, possibly a generation!), and in the mean time, the kids still are hungry.


I agree that kids should not suffer because of their "greedy selfish parents". Perhaps making it a crime to neglect your children if you don't adequately feed them. Oh wait. Isn't neglecting your children already a crime??? If you put yourself ahead of your children you are abusing them and should be dealt with as such. 

And I'm sorry. Educating parents is the answer. Yes, its not an overnight solution. But that is why it's a long term solution. What are you teaching parents and children if you move the problem to someone else? It's the start of what will end up being kitchens in all schools to provide lunches for all children. And then when the cost gets too great, we will see cost cutting come in which will mean nutrition will take a back seat over sustenance. Oh, and then we also have another generation who can't cook or feed themselves short of prepared meals. You only need to look at Britain's generations of school meals and what that has produced. A good article on the problems of Britain's school system.  If you still believe the easy answer is the solution I can respect your opinion.

If you're trying really hard, and still not making it, let me help. But if you're not willing to help yourself, what hope do any of us hold in helping you, and there is NO HOPE for that child. Think about who your parents were and how they helped you become who you are today. If you didn't have those parents would you still have made it? Maybe. But most wouldn't. 

The first step in stoping child poverty isn't helping the kids. Its educating the parents and making them responsible. If they choose (and yes, if you have children it's a choice) then they are responsible, and if they neglect the children in any way, it should be adressed. And if they still choose to neglect their children, then I'm sure we can find families who will be willing to look after them. Its not an easy answer but too often we're putting the rights of the parents ahead of the children.

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  Reply # 687756 18-Sep-2012 15:09 Send private message

Feed the kids at school, the parents are failures. 

Kids turn up to school hungry because their parents fail, a decent parent will starve to death before their child goes hungry. The welfare system here in NZ means nobody actually needs to starve, but if you spend money on alcohol or drugs there is less for food. 

But not feeding the kids at school punishes the child not the parent. 

Imposing economic sanctions on the parents will probably end up hurting the child more than the failing parent because the whatever money there is probably won't be spent on the child, less money overall equals less money for child. Because these are not good parents. 

Giving the parent more money does not mean the child will be better off, because these are not good parents. 

So, feeding the child at school at least means the kid gets to eat. No, it isn't great but I would say if you can't feed your child education isn't really going to help. You don't feed your child because you are a bad parent, not because you are 'uneducated'. 




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  Reply # 687804 18-Sep-2012 16:55 Send private message

crackrdbycracku: Feed the kids at school, the parents are failures. 

Kids turn up to school hungry because their parents fail, a decent parent will starve to death before their child goes hungry. The welfare system here in NZ means nobody actually needs to starve, but if you spend money on alcohol or drugs there is less for food. 

But not feeding the kids at school punishes the child not the parent. 

Imposing economic sanctions on the parents will probably end up hurting the child more than the failing parent because the whatever money there is probably won't be spent on the child, less money overall equals less money for child. Because these are not good parents. 

Giving the parent more money does not mean the child will be better off, because these are not good parents. 

So, feeding the child at school at least means the kid gets to eat. No, it isn't great but I would say if you can't feed your child education isn't really going to help. You don't feed your child because you are a bad parent, not because you are 'uneducated'. 


This is the unfortunate truth of the matter; parents who don't care won't start caring if you cut their benefits, the children will only suffer more, likewise if you increase their benefits, they'll spend it just like now.  Feeding kids should be the first thing that happens, it is obvious to anyone, so I'm not sure if "educating" the parents is going to help any.

In the long term, if the kids can learn better at school, and I dare say providing them lunch might help with attendance too, they can come out the other side as productive adults and hopefully, hopefully mind, this allows them to treat the next generation better.

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  Reply # 687842 18-Sep-2012 18:25 Send private message



As for the price, we can't afford not to. I think Campbell Live costed it at $4m a year... can anyone confirm? If so, that's peanuts. That's one dollar each person PER YEAR.

Labour priced it at around $21m I think - but even then we're talking about less than the price of a coffee per person per year at the outside.

This shouldn't even be a discussion, we should just get on and do what all civilised countries do - feed our kids.




Hi, 

Look I don't disagree with the sentiment, but I don't think claiming that all 1st world countries feed their kids is near accurate. I would suggest the exact situation exists in Australia, US, Canada, almost everywhere there are people who prioritize smoking, drinking and drugs over feeding kids! (and it's not just those reasons either for the record)

The OP video is fairly appalling, but Campbell live is well known for their biased videos in these situations. They aim to pull at the heart strings by dramatizing the situation.

They made claims unsubstantiated/assumed which might be true, but likely isn't as bad as made out. 

I'd happily donate $100 or $1000 to stamp out the problem, but I seriously seriously doubt it's as simple as that. Giving these kids food isn't going to single handedly deal to the issue, it's a very important but small part of a problem. Also it's worth noting that 1.6M people that people are saying need to donate just a few $ also include those who are not feeding their kids!

It's also worth noting that doing this on a larger scale requires infrastructure and resources which MASSIVELY increase the raw cost of putting food in front of kids! No chance it's going to cost $4M when it's cost $100M to put the Rena situation right! :) 


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Master Geek
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  Reply # 687846 18-Sep-2012 18:54 Send private message

networkn:


As for the price, we can't afford not to. I think Campbell Live costed it at $4m a year... can anyone confirm? If so, that's peanuts. That's one dollar each person PER YEAR.

Labour priced it at around $21m I think - but even then we're talking about less than the price of a coffee per person per year at the outside.

This shouldn't even be a discussion, we should just get on and do what all civilised countries do - feed our kids.




Hi, 

Look I don't disagree with the sentiment, but I don't think claiming that all 1st world countries feed their kids is near accurate. I would suggest the exact situation exists in Australia, US, Canada, almost everywhere there are people who prioritize smoking, drinking and drugs over feeding kids! (and it's not just those reasons either for the record)

The OP video is fairly appalling, but Campbell live is well known for their biased videos in these situations. They aim to pull at the heart strings by dramatizing the situation.

They made claims unsubstantiated/assumed which might be true, but likely isn't as bad as made out. 

I'd happily donate $100 or $1000 to stamp out the problem, but I seriously seriously doubt it's as simple as that. Giving these kids food isn't going to single handedly deal to the issue, it's a very important but small part of a problem. Also it's worth noting that 1.6M people that people are saying need to donate just a few $ also include those who are not feeding their kids!

It's also worth noting that doing this on a larger scale requires infrastructure and resources which MASSIVELY increase the raw cost of putting food in front of kids! No chance it's going to cost $4M when it's cost $100M to put the Rena situation right! :) 



In all those countries there are programmes to feed kids at lunchtime. In the UK we were fed "school dinners" every day - the kids that brought their lunch were a bit odd.

I deliberately chose $1 per person because I don't care if you're a tax payer or not, when it's at that level (one dollar PER YEAR) there isn't a single person in New Zealand who couldn't hand over a gold coin. Not one. Young, old, rich, poor, homeless... one dollar per year is all it will take.

Now if that's right (and so far nobody's disputed it - it's based on Kidscan data apparently) then how on earth can you oppose it, regardless of what you think the parents should be doing or who is at fault.

It's one dollar per person per year to make a major problem in our education system (not to mention health system, not to mention future social welfare system, not to mention our criminal justice system...) go away, or at least go a long way towards making it go away.

These aren't someone else's kids, they're our kids. All of us. If we don't feed them at school we're as responsible as their parents for them failing at school, getting lousy jobs, going on the dole, falling back into poverty, ending up in court or in jail and all the rest that goes with it. Because that's where this leads - if you want a silver bullet to health problems, crime stats, to poverty itself, it's education and in order for education to work you need to have food in you.

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Master Geek
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  Reply # 687847 18-Sep-2012 18:57 Send private message

My apologies for the rant, but this is important.

If we don't pick up the pieces now, we'll pick up the pieces for the rest of their lives and that's not fair on anyone.

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Ultimate Geek
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  Reply # 687855 18-Sep-2012 19:28 Send private message

BraaiGuy: OK I'm going to sound blunt ...

But why is it the Schools/Governments problem that the kids don't have lunch?

I blame the parents. There is no excuse for letting your kid go to school with nothing to eat. No excuse. A slice of bread costs how much? A loaf of bread can be bought for $1.80

Sorry I don't buy into this Poverty in NZ nonsense.

Agree. Feeding kids in school is fine.. as long as it is funded by a direct debit from the drop kick parents bank account. 



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  Reply # 687860 18-Sep-2012 19:32 Send private message

PaulBrislen: My apologies for the rant, but this is important.

If we don't pick up the pieces now, we'll pick up the pieces for the rest of their lives and that's not fair on anyone.


I totally understand, most people see the need, but Campbell Live just didn't portray the entire situation. The Government isn't stupid, realistically if this problem truly could be resolved for $4M they would, but it won't cost that. Initially these projects start with a lot of enthusiasm everyone gets behind it, agrees to help but over time the projects climb in cost and people get less involved. 

It's also worth noting these parents who couldn't "afford" to feed the kids "proper" meals had individually wrapped cookie times and other expensive items which could be replaced with bread and jam which would be more filling etc, for a similar cost. 

The logistics of feeding that many people aren't properly calculated. It takes a LOT of manpower to get something like this to worth smoothly every day. What if a supplier goes under,can't supply, misses a deadline etc etc.. Someone has to pick up the slack! 

I am not saying don't do it, I'll gladly start with my $1000 or more even, if someone shows me a 3 year business plan

gzt

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  Reply # 687863 18-Sep-2012 19:39 Send private message

The organisation with the $2M estimate is Kids Can. They have been running a program using a combination of corporate product donations and private philanthropy - http://www.kidscan.org.nz. Last time I visited the site they did not have an option for one off donations - but they have since implemented it.

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Ultimate Geek
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  Reply # 687908 18-Sep-2012 22:05 Send private message

I fail to see the point of this report by Tristram Clayton or the direction it is going. Money was tight growing up for us, lunch was an occasional treat although there would always be some form of dinner on the table.

I'd say that has not affected my ability to achieve in school whatsoever.

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  Reply # 687911 18-Sep-2012 22:16 Send private message





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Check out mine - i.am.a.can.do.kiwi.nz - [email protected]


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  Reply # 687916 18-Sep-2012 22:42 Send private message

BraaiGuy: OK I'm going to sound blunt ...

But why is it the Schools/Governments problem that the kids don't have lunch?

I blame the parents. There is no excuse for letting your kid go to school with nothing to eat. No excuse. A slice of bread costs how much? A loaf of bread can be bought for $1.80

Sorry I don't buy into this Poverty in NZ nonsense.


of course you can blame the parents, they are absolutely responsible. 

unfortunately, though, the parents will still be poor, alcoholics, gamblers, etc after all the blame and the kids will still go hungry. 

the kids, themselves, don't have any control over their parents or their own situation which is why it might be a good idea to help them out at school...




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