The thing that intruiges me about the government’s plan to provide long-term free contraceptives to female beneficiaries and their daughters is the amount budgeted for the program. $1 million dollars.
According to MSD, there are approximately 190,000 working age female beneficiaries. Let’s be conservative and guess that this scheme also provides for half that many daughters, and you have 270,000 clients, which works out at $3.70 per person to pay for doctors visits and birth control.
Sue Bradford is worried that WINZ staff will pressure female beneficiaries into going on birth control against their will. That’s not going to happen, because the money simply isn’t there. That million dollars will pay for some pamphlets about birth control to be printed up and distributed to WINZ offices and . . . that’s about it.
Why a million dollars? Did that figure come from a research study? Treasury? A policy analyst? My guess is that it came from a media advisor as the lowest amount the government could spend and still generate the headlines, news stories and discussion on talk-back that they’ve enjoyed over the last few days.