EDITORIAL: Child poverty not a quick fix

Seasonal charity alone won’t solve growing problem

Everyone is gearing up for the Christmas season, that wonderful time of year focused on giving. There are food drives collecting for the food bank, and campaigns of all kinds to help those in need, including toy drives trying to ensure all children have something waiting for them under the Christmas tree.

This is a great thing, and it is good-hearted people that both organize and contribute to them. But the best they can hope for, and it is a good goal, is to alleviate some of the need.

The sad fact is, the issue of child poverty is not going to be solved by a once-a-year campaign.

According to the annual report released by First Call, a coalition of advocacy groups, child poverty is on the rise in B.C. rather than declining. The B.C. Child Poverty Report Card says 153,000 children were living below the poverty line in this province in 2012.

Last year, the report said 169,240 children.

First Call set out 19 recommendations in their report with a goal of reducing the provincial child poverty rate to seven per cent by 2020.

The recommendations cover a range, from raising the minimum wage to increased child tax benefits and rescinding cuts to Employment Insurance. But what they all have in common is the need for provincial and federal governments to address the problem.

Back in 1989 – yes, 25 years ago – all political parties in the House of Commons collectively vowed to end child poverty in a decade.

We’re still waiting. And, obviously, it’s not an easy solution to come by, but when we see the enormity of the problem of child poverty, it is clear it is time for upper levels of government to join in the fight to make some long-term change.

We can’t wait another 25 years.

– Black Press

 

Just Posted

Choir study shows people with dementia can learn new songs

Volunteers need for Alzheimer’s helpline, World Alzheimer’s Day is Sept. 21

Victoria’s ‘Penny Girl’ to tell story of gender transition in new documentary

Frankie Edroff will write film, Empress Avenue Media to direct, produce project funded by Telus Storyhive

Four Greater Victoria mayors to be acclaimed in fall election

No election in District of Highlands with six council candidates up for six seats

First phase of Highway 14 improvement project nears completion

Province ready to start more work this fall in Sooke

United Way asks Victoria to share local love

2018 campaign aims to raise another $5M

Scheer pushes Trudeau to re-start Energy East pipeline talks

Conservative Leader Andrew Scheer questioned the Prime Minister over Trans Mountain project

Mistaken identity: Missing dog claimed in Moose Jaw belongs to another family

Brennen Duncan was reunited with a white Kuvasz that was found in Saskatchewan

Abandoned kitten safe and sound thanks to B.C. homeless man

‘Jay’ found little black-and-white kitten in a carrier next to a dumpster by a Chilliwack pet store

Police chief defends controversial marijuana seizure

Advocates said cannabis was part of an opioid-substitution program in Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside

VIDEO: B.C. deer struggles with life-preserver caught in antlers

Campbell River resident captures entangled deer on camera

Trans Mountain completes Burrard Inlet spill exercise

Training required, some work continues on pipeline expansion

Supporters of B.C. man accused of murdering Belgian tourist pack courtoom

Family and friends of Sean McKenzie, 27, filled the gallery for brief court appearance in Chilliwack

Pot, cash, mansions: Judge divvies up illegal estate of divorcing B.C. couple

The Smiths ran a multi-million marijuana operation that spanned three counties

Most Read