Controversial Child Poverty Documentary Wins People's Choice Award

Thursday 15 March 2012, 4:37PM
By Thornton Communications

Bryan Bruce, the maker of the Child Poverty documentary that screened on TV3 in the week leading up to last years election is “absolutely delighted” that it has been voted best documentary in the TV Guide Best of the Box People’s Choice Awards.

“I thought it was terrific that TV3 chose to place my documentary prior to the election. It was an opinionated apolitical piece that challenged New Zealanders to think about how our unbridled free market economy has seriously damaged the health and well being of our poorest children,” said Bruce.

No one has seriously challenged me on the content of the programme. What some right wing critics chose to do was to criticise the timing of it, screening as it did a week before the election.

“My answer is that it’s time we grew up about the influence of television on politics. Perhaps in the days when New Zealand had one TV channel there might have been some argument that opinion pieces should not run just prior to Election Day. But these days it is not uncommon for people to have the choice of 30 channels to watch. What happened the night Inside Child Poverty screened was really heartening. Viewers switched over from other channels in their droves to watch the documentary (and stayed with it) because they found it relevant and important.”

“I am humbled by the number of people who voted for Inside Child Poverty in this year’s TV Guide Best of the Box People’s Choice Awards. And I thank them for bringing the focus back to where it should be – on the 250,000  Kiwi kids living on the poverty line who really deserve a free school lunch, free medical care and the guarantee of a warm dry place to live.”