Government’s Winter Energy Payment kicks in for over 1 million Kiwis

Social Development and Employment

A warmer winter is on the horizon for over 1 million New Zealanders receiving either a main benefit or New Zealand Superannuation as the Winter Energy Payment begins today.

“When we first came into office, we introduced the Winter Energy Payment as part of our Government’s December 2017 Families Package. This was designed to help older New Zealanders and many of our low and middle income families heat their homes over winter,” Minister for Social Development and Employment Carmel Sepuloni said.

Between 1 May and 1 October this year, single people with no dependent children will receive a boost of $20.46 per week while couples and families with children will receive an extra $31.82 per week.

“It’s tough for many whānau across the country, but the Winter Energy Payment is another step towards ensuring they’re supported to cover some of the costs which can peak during winter,” Carmel Sepuloni said.

“We know that many older New Zealanders need every cent of support they get and the feedback we have got in previous years shows that it continues to be positively received.

“Having a warm home plays a part in preventing respiratory illnesses through the winter season and lowers the risk of other health issues. This payment supports people and whānau to cover the cost of energy bills and helps them heat their homes.

“The Winter Energy Payment provides support alongside the suite of income increases that took effect on 1 April, including increases to main benefits, New Zealand Superannuation, Working for Families and the Minimum Wage.

“There’s no silver bullet to solving issues like the cost of living, but we’ve taken a range of actions to lift Kiwis' incomes that, together, will make things easier for families.” Carmel Sepuloni said.

People don’t need to apply for the Winter Energy Payment, they’ll get it automatically. The Winter Energy Payment doesn’t affect any other payments people may be getting.