Simon Collins' series of articles about sole parents and the DPB published in today's NZ Herald take me back to David McLoughlin's substantial article for the North and South, "The DPB Disaster". McLoughlin also visited suburbs and towns where sole parents proliferated - Glen Innes, Flaxmere and Tokoroa. Collins went to Kawerau.
McLoughlin's investigation was in 1995. 15 years ago and essentially nothing has changed. That is the year Maraia Enoka was born. Now she is 15, pregnant and describes herself as a "breeder". Just tragic.
Economic conditions in 1995 weren't dissimilar to right now. But between then and now we have seen good economic times. Yet the DPB disaster persists. And it always will if it continues to be laid at the feet of the economy.
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