CPAG  Image Trio



Wednesday September 21, 2016 from 5:30 PM to 7:00 PM NZST
Add to Calendar


Mezzanine MZ 05 and 06, Rutherford House 
Victoria University of Wellington Pipitea Campus,
New Zealand

Driving Directions 


Celia Hayes
Child Poverty Action Group
09 3025260


Child Poverty and Social Justice: Not all are equal in NZ

At this Wellington event Lisa Marriott will report on research findings showing that individuals in New Zealand are likely to receive different treatments in the justice system depending on whether their crime is ‘white-collar’ or ‘blue-collar’.  Tax evasion and welfare fraud are used for illustrative purposes.  The presentation will also report on a range of other situations where individuals who have fewer resources will be treated more harshly than those who have greater resources.

Catriona MacLennan will speak about Kathryn's Story, a report published by Child Poverty Action Group on 1 July 2016. Kathryn's Story puts a human face on the research undertaken by Dr Marriott, telling the story of one beneficiary’s tragic life. Kathryn suffered physical and sexual abuse during her childhood and her young son was later killed by her partner. Kathryn was subsequently prosecuted and convicted of benefit fraud. She was sentenced to jail and, despite always maintaining her innocence, has been pursued by the Ministry of Social Development for the past 15 year to repay an alleged debt of $117,000. The Ministry has spent more than $100,000 seeking to recover the debt, even though Kathryn is chronically ill and on a benefit and clearly cannot pay the money.

Speakers Bios 

Lisa Marriott is an Associate Professor of Taxation at Victoria University of Wellington’s School of Accounting and Commercial Law.   Lisa’s research interests include social justice and inequality, and the behavioural impacts of taxation.  Lisa has publications in a range of refereed journals and is the author of The Politics of Retirement Savings Taxation: A Trans-Tasman Perspective. In 2013 Lisa was awarded a Royal Society of New Zealand Marsden Grant to investigate the different treatments of tax evasion and welfare fraud in the New Zealand justice system. Lisa has worked in industry in the private sector in the United Kingdom and in the New Zealand public sector. 

Catriona MacLennan, author of Kathryn's Story, is a barrister, journalist and social activist with extensive experience in relation to benefit law, credit and loan sharks, domestic violence and other issues.  Catriona practised law in South Auckland for 14 years and was a Duty Lawyer at Manukau District Court for 11 years. Catriona helped set up Nga Ture Kaitiaki ki Waikato Community Law Centre to provide free legal advice to people who could not afford lawyers. She was the project director for Nga Tangata Microfinance Trust, established to provide affordable loans to low income families and keep them out of the clutches of loan sharks. Catriona is a co-author of the Child Poverty Action Group report The complexities of “relationship” in the welfare system and the consequences for children and presented CPAG’s 2014 television series Child Poverty in Aotearoa – Tackling Inequality 2014. Catriona is the author of five books and has presented six television series about child poverty, legal rights, feminist issues and animal rights. Catriona is involved with the Living Wage Movement Aotearoa New Zealand and the Pay Equity Coalition Auckland.