Social policy

Ageing, Disability and International

We provide advice on:

  • policies to assist individuals and society prepare for, take advantage of opportunities, and meet the social and economic challenges of population ageing
  • ways to support disabled people and people with health conditions achieve their potential, and addressing the barriers they may face in doing everyday things like other New Zealanders
  • Social Security Agreements, portability of New Zealand Superannuation, the Ministry’s international relationships, our international reporting obligations, and to support international visits for outgoing and incoming delegations.

Office for Disability Issues

The Office for Disability Issues is the focal point within government on disability issues. We promote and monitor implementation of the New Zealand Disability Strategy and the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities.

Read more about the Office for Disability Issues

Office for Senior Citizens

The Office for Senior Citizens provides information on the senior citizens sector, promotes and monitors the Positive Ageing Strategy; and provides services to the Minister for Senior Citizens.

Read more about the Office for Senior Citizens

Child, Family and Community Policy

We provide advice on:

  • ensuring all children are valued, able to get the best start in life and protected from harm
  • developing strong and resilient families by ensuring they have the information, support and services they need to raise their children well and make the right choices for them and their children
  • the prevention and response to family and sexual violence
  • building strong communities.

The Family Violence Unit is the focal point within government on family violence prevention. The unit coordinates information and strategic advice on family violence prevention across the sector. The unit supports ministers and other groups on family violence issues.

Housing, Income Support and Employment

We provide advice on:

  • policies to support people’s transition out of social housing into sustainable private market accommodation
  • innovative support products for people with housing need
  • emergency housing and funding
  • the Ministry’s role as the single purchaser of social housing places, including information, contracting arrangements and policy settings to enhance our effectiveness as a purchaser
  • income support for working age people and financial assistance during emergencies
  • services and interventions to help people get into work
  • further changes to welfare settings to support people into work and reduce the long term liability of the welfare system, including proposals related to manifesto commitments and extending the Youth Service to at-risk 18 and 19 year olds.

Social Sector Strategy

This group provides advice on the goals and performance of the wider social sector and services to support social policy teams.

We provide advice on:

  • social sector governance (through the Social Sector Board and other boards)
  • promoting collaboration across the social sector
  • social sector initiatives that promote performance improvement and innovative ways of working across the social sector
  • cross-cutting social issues
  • the social sector Budget process.

Youth Policy and Development

This group includes the Ministry of Youth Development and provides advice on creating successful pathways for young New Zealanders.

We provide advice on:

  • priority areas that impact young people, to ensure young people’s health, wellbeing and development is front of mind when government policy is made
  • opportunities and ways to encourage young people to participate in society, policy making, leadership and decision-making at a local, national and international level
  • knowledge about youth development and young New Zealanders’ health and wellbeing
  • how young people are contributing to their communities.

Ministry of Youth Development

The Ministry of Youth Development focuses on building the knowledge, skills and experience of young New Zealanders aged 12 to 24 so that they can participate confidently in their communities now and in the future.

Read more about the Ministry of Youth Development

Office of the Chief Policy Advisor

As a resource for the chief executive and our leadership team, this team works collaboratively across the business, but particularly with policy teams. They provide thought leadership on stewardship issues, provide subject matter expertise, support capability building, and expand the boundaries of current knowledge and ways of working.

Collectively, the team within the Office of the Chief Policy Advisor holds significant institutional memory on social policy and its development in the Ministry and its predecessor agencies. They work with individuals and groups across the Ministry, public sector, academic community (both within New Zealand and internationally) and the community sector, with a practical understanding of the policy and political contexts of advice given.