From last Monday, the welfare system has changed, with new expectations and obligations and a much stronger work focus.

It allows us to provide more individualised support, with a particular focus on those at risk of long-term dependence.

Replacing a complex system of seven categories are three main benefits:  Jobseeker Support for those actively seeking work, Sole Parent Support for sole parents with children under 14 years,  and Supported Living Payment for people significantly restricted by sickness, injury or disability.

The changes we made in October 2012 are making a difference as already 9,000 sole parents have gone off welfare into work. Benefit rates will remain unchanged and there will be extra support for those who want to work but need more help to be ready for it.

National campaigned on all of these welfare reforms and is delivering on those promises to New Zealanders.