by Darryl Evans, chief executive of the Mangere Budgeting Services Trust
Mike Hosking has lashed out at social agencies, many staffed by low-waged workers or volunteers, who help people struggling financially.
He states someone earning $100,000 and can't make ends meet, needs help, a budget and a calculator.
The fact is many people in these agencies earn way less than that, yet they do precisely what he says.
They help people from all walks of life to get control of their debts, develop a realistic budget and learn how to live financially sustainable lives.
It's hard to take seriously someone who, I would guess, earns 10 times the average wage.
In New Zealand, we earn low wages and work long hours. By comparison Australians earn an average 32 per cent more, Canadians 22 per cent and Britain 9 per cent more.
Consider mother-of-two Joanna, working in a retail job in Henderson, and her take-home pay of $550, which is eaten up by rent of $530 every week.
Even with support from Work and Income, it is almost impossible for her to survive.
But this article is not about rental prices in Auckland, rather, it is about Kiwis doing it tough.
Sadly, Joanna's story is increasingly being told across Aotearoa.
Research shows that 40 per cent of all children living in hardship have at least one adult in the home working full-time.
Yet these families face undue hardship, the kids experience food insecurity and go to school with no stationery or no warm winter jacket.
This so-called industry of people, who "need poverty, deprivation, hard times and misery to justify their own jobs and existence", is a sector of kindhearted, good people who want to make New Zealand what it once was - the "land of milk and honey"; a place where everyone had a roof over their head, a hearty meal on the table and a warm bed to sleep in.
Not a country where who knows how many sleep in cars, camp grounds, garages or couch surf.
Where a pensioner tells my staff she is afraid to turn on the heating because she is worried about a high power bill or asks for a food parcel because her pension has not stretched to groceries after paying market rent, then enough is enough.
And yes Mike, we do have a responsibility to speak out.
Hosking's lack of empathy and compassion is evident in what he says publicly but I remind him and others: when the stack of cards fall, and often they do, remember we will be here to help rebuild the pieces; one stumbling block at a time.