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General News · 26th June 2008
Mary Clare Preston
Did you receive a questionaire in the mail from James Lunney, MP asking if parents would like to keep or loose the $100/mo benefit intended to contribute to childcare needs? If you would like to answer him by calling his constuency office - in Nanaimo you can call toll free 1-866-390-7550 I decided that yes I did want to let him know what I think, but was not prepaired to tick a box that offered only two options that do not answer the more pertinant larger question of what is the responsibilty of government as a representative of collective society to support the welfare of our children. I called to let his office know that I think this blanket solution does not go far enough to fullfill what I believe is our government's responsibility to address a systemic problem of child poverty. What are the stats? Child poverty relates directly to inadequate childcare options and subsidies, poor wages for childcare workers, inadequate minimum wage. In particular I think our government needs to take greater steps to support single parent families, and collectively I wish we could change our cultural attitude toward "welfare". I want to pay taxes, and I want to see that money go toward programs and funding that truely supports the children in my community to fare well. When all the children in my community have access to safe nurturing childcare, food, shelter, quality healthcare, education, a sense of empowerment and belonging in their community - my child child will be better off. $100 a month Lunney says is the "kind of real respect and real support that parents deserve". What an insult to people struggling to make ends meet and pay rent and childcare expenses out of a single minimum/low wage income.