Petition Closed

Pay superannuitants weekly not fortnightly to make budgeting easier.

With weekly payments superannuitants would have a better income and easier budgeting.

Household bills come in monthly and must be paid by certain dates, and supermarket specials are issued weekly. But because New Zealand Superannuation is paid fortnightly there is a constant mismatch between income and expenditure. And if you work out what your monthly average is by dividing your annual total by twelve, you find that with fortnightly payments you are being paid below that monthly average for nine months of the year, and above it for only three--and that those three good months are always a long way apart. This year, for example, the above-average months, the good months, are January, July and December. So there's five-month stretch to endure where you are below your average monthly income. That situation is unfair and unjust because it makes it more difficult to manage--all because because the government and its bureaucracy cannot be bothered taking real human-beings and real life into account.

If superannuitants were paid weekly instead of fortnightly they would have a better, more even income, and there would be twice as many months in which their income was higher than their monthly average. For example, someone being paid $700 a fortnight would be getting a monthly average of $1517, if you divide the total for the year by twelve. But the actual monthly payments are $1400 for nine months of the year and $2100 for three of them. In 2013 those high months are only January, July and December. Therefore in February, March, April, May, June, August, September, October and November the payments are $117 below the average, so there are long below-average stretche. But if that same person was paid weekly, the monthly income for January, April, July, October and December would be $1750, and the other months would be $1400s, so there would be more above-average months and they would be closer together.

Therefore if the New Zealand government were to make a very simple change, a change that would cost it virtually zilch--if it paid superannuatants weekly instead of fortnightly, the average paid per month would then be good about half the time. Therefore superannuitants would have a higher income in more months, the months that were not as good would be close to good ones, not many months away from them. It would always be possible to take best advantage of weekly specials at the supermarket, and much easier to pay bills before the discount-dates. In short, it would be much easier for elderly people to manage.

But the heartless New Zealand government and Ministry of Social Development claims that to change to weekly payments would cost a lot of money. That is a black lie. It would just be a matter of doing the computer-run weekly instead of monthly. That is underlined by the fact that people on unemployment benefit are paid weekly, so there is no reason why people on New Zealand Superannuation cannot be too.

This petition was delivered to:
  • Minister for Senior Citizens
    New Zealand Government
  • Fairfax Media
    Rob Stock

    Nobilangelo Ceramalus started this petition with a single signature, and now has 10 supporters. Start a petition today to change something you care about.