City supports ADTU’s call for anti-poverty initiative

The Alberni District Teachers’ Union wants something done about the more than 119,000 children in B.C. live in poverty.

More than 119,000 children in B.C. live in poverty and the Alberni District Teachers’ Union wants something done about it.

Teachers’ union president Ken Zydyk presented a 145-signature petition to Port Alberni City Council last week  calling on the provincial government to establish an anti-poverty plan. Council received the petition and voted to support the call for an initiative.

B.C. ranks near the bottom in major areas of poverty according to 2010 data, Zydyk said.

One in seven children — a total of 119,000 in B.C. — live in poverty. The rate of overall poverty has gone up in Canada, and the gap between rich and poor is growing not shrinking, Zydyk said.

In Port Alberni, teachers see evidence of poverty every day. Students often come to school hungry and lacking proper clothing, Zydyk said. As well, use of school breakfast and lunch programs is on the rise. The programs are a good stop-gap, Zydyk said. “But volunteer efforts alone can’t stop the problem.”

The province doesn’t have a comprehensive poverty reduction plan and that’s to its own detriment, Zydyk said. “It’s more costly for a community to do nothing,” he added.

Sustainable food systems, quality public child care, as well as accessible public education and training are all possible. “All that is lacking is political will,” Zydyk said.

Coun. Cindy Solda encouraged Zydyk to touch base with the local health network about the issue, and added that children aren’t the only ones impacted by poverty. “So many others are neglected like seniors, the disabled and those on social assistance,” Solda said.

reporter@albernivalleynews.com

Twitter.com/AlberniNews

Just Posted

City of Port Alberni agreed to three-year extension of track surface

Bob Dailey Stadium track has experienced ‘degradation and tears’ since resurfacing in 2013

Could Thunder in the Valley roar at Alberni’s airport once more?

City of Port Alberni offered Stamp Avenue as a temporary solution

John Douglas looks forward to a “healthier” Port Alberni

Douglas has resigned from his position at the Port Alberni Shelter Society to run for mayor

Alberni weightlifter heads to world championship

Dhaliwal is ranked second in the Pan Americas and fifth overall in the world

Wildfire crews gain upper hand on Arbutus Ridge fire

Controlled burning helping to contain fire: Coastal Fire Centre

‘Queen of Soul’ Aretha Franklin has died

Publicist Gwendolyn Quinn reports Franklin passed Thursday at 9:50 a.m. at her home in Detroit

B.C. RCMP say Kinder Morgan protest camp to be dismantled today

RCMP say they will enforce a court injunction today and remove Trans Mountain pipeline protesters who have been camped outside a Kinder Morgan terminal in Burnaby.

Altidore nets 3 as Toronto drubs Whitecaps 5-2

Vancouver falls 7-4 on aggregate in Canadian Championship final

Ottawa intervenes to get B.C. ball player, 13, to Little League World Series

Before immigration issue was resolved, Dio Gama was out practicing the game he loves Wednesday

Pet goldfish invades small B.C. lake

Pinecrest Lake is located between Whistler and Squamish

Mounties deployed to help B.C. communities affected by wildfires

RCMP officers heading to places particularly within central, northern and southern B.C.

Quebec sets aside $900 million for companies hurt by U.S. tariffs

Premier Philippe Couillard says his government will make $863 million available over five years

B.C. company patents Sasquatch, the country’s first homegrown hops plant

Created by Hops Connect, Sasquatch hops are being grown commercially for the first time in B.C.

Most Read