Government to investigate Gloriavale's use of Working for Families payments

The AM Show 02/05/2018

Gloriavale's use of millions of dollars in Working for Families payments will be investigated by the Government.

Finance Minister Grant Robertson has put officials on the case, following a Newshub investigation where expelled member John Ready alleged the money was controlled by Gloriavale's leaders rather than its families.

"I've seen the stories that Newshub has been running on this and I'm certainly going to be asking for some advice about that particular issue around Working for Families tax credits," Mr Robertson told The AM Show on Wednesday.

"It does seem like an unusual arrangement and I want to get some advice to see how that stacks up legally."

Mr Robertson acknowledged that Gloriavale families may choose to give their money to the sect's leadership, but he still wanted clarification.

"Obviously if someone chooses to have their pay paid into a bank account that's their business," he says.

"But clearly when the Government's providing support through Working for Families tax credits we've got some interest in how that works. We'll certainly ask some questions about it."

Mr Ready has told Newshub that when his 17-year-old daughter Unity left the community, he and wife Purity decided to forward their Working for Families money to her.

They forwarded two fortnightly $1386 payments before the leadership found out, and got the money to go back to the community again.

Unity Ready has provided Newshub with her bank statement showing the payments were made.

The Ready family got a $1386 fortnightly Working for Families payment for their nine children - $36,036 a year.

There are 90 families in Gloriavale. All are similar, meaning the total potential Working for Families payments could be $3.2 million a year.

Watch the full interview with Grant Robertson above.

The AM Show with Duncan Garner, Amanda Gillies and Mark Richardson, weekdays 6-9am on RadioLIVE and streaming live to the rova app on Android and iPhone.

RadioLIVE/Newshub.