Inequality in NZ - What to do about it? - Paul Barber

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“The Important Thing About Income Inequality is What You Do about it – Exploring the Path to
Reducing Income Inequality in Aotearoa New Zealand”

Paul Barber, Policy Advisor, New Zealand Council of Christian Social Services

While the tents of the Occupy protesters may be moved on, the issues of income inequality will
not be pushed to one side so easily. The backdrop of massive international social and economic
disparities shape the context for the particular challenges we face in Aotearoa New Zealand. Deputy
Prime Minister Bill English has said that the important thing about income inequality is what we
actually do about it. This lecture looks at our current situation and asks – what (if anything) is being
done about inequality right now and what more we could do. Can we find a path to a social and
political consensus on income inequality and what might that path look like?

Paul Barber (BCA, MTh) is Policy Advisor with the NZ Council of Christian Social Services (NZCCSS)
and is involved with the networking, support, research and policy analysis for the social services of
the churches. NZCCSS agencies work with those most impacted by socio-economic disadvantage and
are responding to the associated health and social impacts on a daily basis. Through research and
policy analysis NZCCSS works toward changes in national level policy in health, housing and social
policy to reduce poverty and inequality based on sound research evidence, experience of effective
social service practice and the principles of justice and compassion The Closer
Together Whakatata Mai – reducing inequalities programme is focused on the issue of income
inequality in Aotearoa New Zealand.

February 28th, 2012 5:30 PM