'I am Metiria': Beneficiaries share struggles with WINZ

All stories in this article have been re-shared with the owner's permission.

After Green Party co-leader Metiria Turei opened up about her struggles as a beneficiary raising her daughter, others have come forward to share their own stories.

Under the tag "#IAmMetiria", Ms Turei's heartfelt admission has received an outpouring of support.

But not only support - others have shared their own struggles in a system they say desperately needs a revamp.

Some spoke only under a pseudonym, afraid their honesty would end up costing them their support.

Jessie Puru said her mother, disabled after a stroke, was among those treated as "less than human".

"That's why friends who need help after working their whole lives are terrified to ask for it," she said.

"[My mother] was also threatened to be hung up on by them because she was confused as to which letter they needed when they just asked for 'a letter'."

Jackie, who runs Auckland-based The Aunties, said she'll avoid taking women to WINZ when helping those escaping domestic violence.

"Women just out of violence deserve to be spoiled rotten. And I make sure the Aunties do the best we bloody can. WINZ can sod off," she said.

"They've been through humiliation, not putting them through more."

On Monday night, The Project presenter Kanoa Lloyd spoke emotionally about her family's challenges.

"People need help, and they need support. And they do not need to be shamed or judged because believe me, that shame and judgement is built into that system just fine," she said.

All of the comments have moved Ms Turei - who after all, was the reason the hashtag was created.

"I can only read a few #IAmMetiria at a time because it's heartbreaking," she wrote on Tuesday night.

"Too much, whanau, just awesome. And soon, we're all gonna fix it."