The Project panelist: 'The poor don't know what to do with money'

A panellist has been criticised for saying he hopes a person who won the lottery recently isn’t someone from poverty.

Mark Richardson, a Kiwi radio presenter and retired test cricketer, appeared on The Project on Thursday night in New Zealand.

The panel were discussing issues lottery winners face when Richardson weighed in.

"The problem with these Lotto winners and their stories of hard luck is that I just think the poor don't know quite what to do with money," Richardson said.

"Nor do they appreciate it."

Mark Richardson, a former cricketer and radio presenter, says poor people don't know what to do with money - specifically lottery winnings. Source: The Project/ Three Now

He added “it’s a good thing” that the latest winner, from Wednesday’s A$38m Powerball in New Zealand, is from Auckland.

“And let’s hope they come from a good suburb as well,” Richardson said.

A man in the audience laughed at his comments.

But not everyone found Richardson’s remarks quite so funny.

One woman on Twitter called his comments “awful”.

“Just because a person is poor doesn't mean they're unintelligent,” another woman tweeted. “Their life experience has probably taught them that to be generous, to be kind.”

Research shows there is actually a type of distress which affects people who win the lottery leading to them blowing their money. Source: The Lott

However, there might be an element of truth to Richardson’s comments.

Yahoo News Australia explored why lottery winners go broke in September.

There’s a symptom of winning the lottery called Sudden Wealth Syndrome and is described as the distress that afflicts individuals who suddenly come into large sums of money.

The term was coined by US psychologist Dr Stephen Goldbart and is characterised by potential anxiety, guilt and a sense of isolation that can come with a sudden influx of wealth.

According to Dr Goldbart, sufferers can become overwhelmed, grow suspicious of people around them, and make poor decisions such as overspending or lending money to family and friends causing strain on relationships.

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