Institute for Governance and Policy Studies

Welfare Working Group

The Welfare Working Group was established by Cabinet to undertake an expansive and fundamental review of New Zealand’s welfare system.  The Group’s primary task was to identify how to reduce long-term welfare dependency.

The Welfare Working Group presented its recommendations to the Government on 22 February 2011.

All PDF documents require Acrobat Reader.

Final Report File size File type
RTF Download the Final Report 1.8 MB doc
PDF Download the Final Report 2.9 MB PDF
Executive Summary File size File type
RTF Download the Executive Summary 783 KB doc
PDF Download the Executive Summary 350 KB PDF

The Welfare Working Group engaged with a wide range of individuals and organisations in the conversation about creating a more sustainable and fair welfare system. The Welfare Working Group released an Issues Paper and Options Paper for public discussion in 2010.

Read more about the Welfare Working Group's engagement with New Zealanders.

Options Paper

In November 2010, the Welfare Working Group published "Reducing Long-Term Benefit Dependency: The Options". This paper canvasses a wide range of topics and looks at possible ways to improve the benefit system.

All PDF documents require Acrobat Reader.

Options Paper File size File type
RTF Download the Options Paper 1.62 MB PDF
PDF Download the Options Paper 1 MB PDF
Executive Summary File size File type
RTF Download the Executive Summary 890 KB PDF
PDF Download the Executive Summary 1.9 MB PDF

Access the submissions the Welfare Working Group received.

Issues Paper

In August 2010, the Welfare Working Group published "Long-Term Benefit Dependency: The Issues".

All PDF documents require Acrobat Reader.

Summary Issues Paper File size File type
RTF Download the Summary Issues Paper 1 MB doc
PDF Download the Summary Issues Paper 1 MB PDF
Detailed Issues Paper File size File type
RTF Download the Detailed Issues Paper 1.9 MB doc
PDF Download the Detailed Issues Paper 1.9 MB PDF

Access the submissions the Welfare Working Group received.

Welfare Working Group background

The Government asked the Working Group to consider three questions:

  • Is New Zealand doing the right things to reduce long-term welfare dependency?
  • Have we got the right welfare structure in place, and the right incentives to get people into work?
  • Are we getting the outcomes that taxpayers want from the system, looking at sustainability, fairness, access and improved social outcomes?

Further details about what was in scope and out of scope for the review can be found here

The Welfare Working Group was hosted by Victoria University’s Institute for Governance and Policy Studies and was supported by a secretariat seconded from across Government agencies.