Child poverty is a year-round issue

Report shows too many children live below the poverty line

With Christmas only two weeks away, the signs of the holiday season abound.

And along with the sights of glistening lights and shoppers bustling about, 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.

Those are all worthwhile causes and the people who organize and contribute to them should be celebrated. But the most they can do is 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. According to the B.C. Child Poverty Report Card, 169,240 children were living below the poverty line in this province in 2012. Last year, the report identified 153,000 children.

Victoria’s Community Social Planning Council estimates 6,540 children in Greater Victoria live in two-parent, two-child families with incomes less than the living wage, calculated at $18.93 an hour in Victoria.

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.

Christmas is a time of giving and a time to share in the joy of children.

With that in mind,there is no better time for senior levels of government to join in the fight to make some long-term change. Christmas shouldn’t be the only time we work to put smiles on the faces of children.

 

Just Posted

Shaving minutes off commutes among the goals for Victoria bus lanes

Work on southbound Douglas Street lane between Tolmie and Hillside getting underway

Backyard of $2.2M Uplands property bulldozed for BMX jump track

34-year-old financial advisor fulfills childhood dream

VicPD nab distracted driver with expired licence

On the phone while in motion, man had overdue fines from driving while impaired

Gallery: Turnout good for Oak Bay’s inaugural volunteer fare

Oak Bay showcased non-profits and more with inaugural volunteer fair

Vic-Alert faces tidal wave of registration after tsunami warnings

City of Victoria system is free and provides early warnings of disaster

Mature Garry Oak falls on Beach Drive

150-year-old tree blocks access in front of Oak Bay Beach Hotel

Castlegar homicide victim identified

The victim was 38-year-old Jordan Workman of Castlegar, B.C.

B.C. Liberals get one last prime-time pitch

Leadership campaign to be decided in Feb. 3 vote

How high is safe from a tsunami? Four metres above sea level

Be disaster ready with food, water and clothing for seven days

Victoria Film Festival set for triumphant return to the big screen

Two decades on, diverse film lineups keep movie-goers coming to the box office

Victoria’s most wanted for the week of Jan. 23

Crime Stoppers will pay a reward of up to $2,000 for information that leads to arrests or the seizure of property or drug

Andrew Scheer on trade, Trump and Trudeau

Canada’s Conservative leader begins three-day visit to B.C.

Bell Canada alert prompts RCMP, privacy watchdog to probe data breach

Company spokesman: ‘Fewer than 100,000 customers were affected’

Victims restrained, sex toys and cash stolen from B.C. adult store

Armed suspects sought in adult store robbery

Most Read