A mother reading to her kids.

Sole Parent Support - September 2019 quarter

Sole Parent Support (SPS) is for single parents whose youngest dependent child is under 14 years old, and who can look for or prepare for part-time work.

Five-year trend

As at the end of September 2019, there were 59,715 sole parents in receipt of Sole Parent Support, or 17.7 percent lower when compared with the September 2014.


The proportion of the working-age population receiving SPS remained stable at 2.0 percent over the last three September quarters.


Annual comparison

The number of people in receipt of Sole Parent Support increased by 1.9 percent or 1,095 more people compared with September 2018.

September 2018

September 2019

Annual change

Number of Sole Parent Support recipients

58,620 59,715 1.9 percent increase

Percentage of working-age population receiving Sole Parent Support

2.0% 2.0% No change

Percentage of working-age main benefit population receiving Sole Parent Support

20.6% 19.9% 0.7 percent decrease

Note 1: Working-age people are aged 18 to 64 years. This definition reflects the minimum age of eligibility for most main benefits and the age of qualification for New Zealand Superannuation.

Note 2: Percentage of working-age population is based on Statistics NZ national population estimate year ended June for relevant years (i.e. the population estimates as at June 2019 have been used for this quarter’s report).

Note 3: Annual changes are calculated from the exact values and are presented to the nearest one decimal point.

Note 4: Percentage of the working-age population and percentage of the working-age benefit population are shown as rounded figures, while the change between them is calculated from the exact values. The difference given may not correspond exactly with the difference between the percentages shown.