John Campbell visits renters in Auckland's Mangere to find out how NZ poorest families are faring in 2018

John Campbell
Source: 1News

Nearly one year on from the new Government taking power, are they working to fix poverty in New Zealand fast enough?

John Campbell will be investigating the depth of poverty in New Zealand, with this week looking at the biggest cost to low income households - rent. 

Darryl Evans of Auckland's Mangere Foodbank Budgeting Services said in 2017 a family of four were able to spend $83.33 on food, however in 2018 that figure dropped to $39, after rent, groceries and petrol had been paid.

"You simply cannot survive on $39 for quality food, which is why we're now raising a generation of two-minute-noodle-kids."

He said it was down to the continual rise in rental prices.

"Something has to give. Minimum wage doesn't cut the mustard anymore. Benefits are not enough. A hungry child only focuses on its belly rumbling, not on education.

"We need to do more and we need to do better."

Campbell asked tenants of a worn-down house in Mangere what they were paying in rent.

"I was arrested by how rough the house looked… Want to know what a housing shortage looks like? This place, which really is a dump, is being rented out for $780 a week," Campbell said.

The change of Government saw the spotlight on child poverty lifted to an extent, "but not the magnitude of it", Campbell said.

Watch the full clip here: