News 1130: Federal minister says child poverty not Ottawa’s problem
Posted December 16, 2013
It appears the federal government won’t be helping BC get out of the top spot when it comes to child poverty.
“Is it my job to feed my neighbour’s child? I don’t think so.” That from Federal Minister of Industry James Moore who is also the Member of Parliament for Port Moody—Westwood—Port Coquitlam. He says it’s the responsibility of the provinces to deal with child poverty, and Ottawa has no plans to step in.
The federal government has been criticized for not meeting a unanimous motion passed in the House of Commons back in 1989 to end poverty by the year 2000. Nothing was done, but the motion was renewed in 2009. Child Poverty Watchdog Campaign 2000 says to this date there has been no movement from Ottawa on helping the estimated 1 in 7 kids living in poverty in our country.
Here in BC, thousands of kids go to school hungry every day because they’re not getting enough to eat. Of late, schools across Metro Vancouver have been left with the difficult decision on whether to put already strained resources into creating lunch and breakfast programs for students in need.
“Certainly we want to make sure that kids go to school full bellied, but is that always the government’s job to be there to serve people their breakfast?” Moore says Ottawa is helping keep kids fed by creating more jobs, and while unemployment was up in BC last month, joblessness across Canada was down.
“We’ve neven been wealthier as a country than we are right now. Never been wealthier,” Moore claimed at an event Friday. He says how poverty is defined is not the same across the country.
Article by Sara Norman for News 1130