Due to the many types of state welfare and charitable assistance, NZ today has no real poverty. No doubt however, there are elements of severe hardship. Although some is due to undeserved misfortune, most occurs due to mismanagement of funds, not using or heeding budgetary help, wasting reusable items, impulse spending on non-essentials and so-on.

Then of course those others — tobacco & booze, plus maybe some weed and pokies thrown in.

I'm not insinuating all of above occur with those with hardship problems, but some could be contributing factors. And family planning help is readily available today. So please

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Kate Sheppard