The report from Stats NZ said the proportion of children who lived in households, with less than half the median disposable income – jumped once housing costs were taken into account.
But advocates said major changes were needed if the country was serious about tackling the issue.
The Child Poverty Reduction Act set both three and 10-year targets to reduce poverty and hardship.
To achieve those targets, government statistician Liz McPherson will report each year against a set of 10 measures.
Susan St John from the Child Poverty Action Group said the last two years’ figures could not be relied on.
“The adjustments by Stats NZ mean that the Government now has a reliable baseline against which to measure the success of its policies,” she said.
“We can be confident for example that on the primary measure, before housing costs 50 percent income, New Zealand had about 180,000 children in poverty,” Ms St John said.
That figure jumped to 254,000 children – about 23 percent – once housing costs were accounted for.
Childrens’ Commissioner Andrew Becroft said the data backed up what was already known.
“There is nothing new in these stats, they are really telling us what we knew in the past, but because it’s from the chief statistician and it’s comprehensive and it’s recent, there is some degree of reliability we can place on them. So it’s nothing new, but the extent of the challenge is laid bare,” Mr Becroft said.
To read more of this article, please follow the link below…