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ERIC Number: ED472529
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2002-Jul
Pages: 70
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: N/A
ISSN: ISSN-1014-7837
When the Invisible Hand Rocks the Cradle: New Zealand Children in a Time of Change. Innocenti Working Papers.
Blaiklock, Alison J.; Kiro, Cynthia A.; Belgrave, Michael; Low, Will; Davenport, Eileen; Hassall, Ian B.
This paper investigates the impact of economic and social reforms in New Zealand since the mid 1980s on the well-being of children. Although the reforms emphasizing the role of market forces and markedly reducing the welfare state and the direct role of the state in the economy were among the most sweeping in scope and scale in any industrialized democracy, the paper notes that their impact has not been systematically measured by the government. Following an introductory section, Section 2 of the paper provides background including the context of the reforms, the ethnic diversity of the childhood population, and the position of Maori in relation to the reforms. Sections 3 to 7 describe what occurred in family incomes, housing, child health, education, and child protection and youth justice, by outlining the reforms and trends in the well-being of children in each area. Section 8 concludes that the reforms have not led to an overall improvement in the well-being of children. Noted in particular is the widening inequality between ethnic and income groups which has left many Maori and Pacific children and children from one-parent and poorer families relatively worse off. Government agencies have had difficulties in addressing the impact on children. Also noted are advances since the mid 1990s, when the pace of the reform process slowed. The paper concludes by pointing out that the New Zealand experience illustrates the vulnerability of children during periods of social upheaval and change and the importance of having effective mechanisms to monitor, protect, and promote the interests of children. (Contains 151 references.) (Author/KB)
UNICEF, Innocenti Research Centre, Piazza SS. Annunziata, 12, 50122 Florence, Italy. Tel: 39-055-203-30; Fax: 39-055-244-827; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: United Nations Children's Fund, Florence (Italy). Innocenti Research Centre.
Identifiers - Location: New Zealand