Designed to stop fathers dodging child support obligations

The sanction is designed to stop fathers dodging child support obligations, but the group Auckland Action Against Poverty (AAAP) said it was excessively punitive, and children were the ones who suffer.

Mothers can have up to $28 deducted from their benefit each week, for each child, if they don’t name the father.

Advocacy groups said it was pushing thousands of women and children further into poverty.

More than 13,000 women are affected by the rule, and more than half of those are Māori. There are also 300 men whose benefit is reduced for failing to name their child’s mother.

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