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101 Magazine

Here is an issue of 101 Magazine that I created when living in Toronto. 101 no longer exists but it ignited the journalism spark in me.

101premiereIssue

BC Child Poverty Report Card

(Written Nov. 24, 2014)

First Call released their 2014 Child Poverty report card. (photo: J.Kidney)

First Call released their 2014 Child Poverty report card. (photo: J.Kidney)

First Call: Child and Youth Advocacy Collation released the 2014 BC Child Poverty report card today. The numbers have not improved at all since a promise to eradicate Child Poverty 25 years ago was made by the Federal government.

One in five children are living in poverty, which is roughly the exact stat that was recorded by First Call 20 years ago in 1994.

“That’s 169, 420 children, enough to fill up the Roger’s Centre nine times over,”  – Scott Graham, Associate Executive Director of Social Planning and Research Council of BC.

Graham mentions that majority of families are single parent families, and most of those are woman raising a child while trying to work at the same time.

Viveca Ellis, of Single Mothers’ Alliance of BC, also a single parent, says “the only way of climbing out of poverty in Vancouver is by establishing a living wage of $40,000 or more, which is a very difficult thing to do when you’re on your own.”

According to First Call, British Columbia is fifth overall in Canada when it comes to the greatest child poverty rates among provinces. At 21%, BC’s child poverty is higher than the Canadian average of 19%. This year actually marks the 25th anniversary since the Federal Government wanted to end child poverty by the year 2000. Yet, there has been an increase here in BC since 1989 from 16% to 21%, says Graham.

Recommendations by First Call have been made in order to try and curve these numbers, hoping to influence a significant decline by the year 2020. Such proposals include adopting a $10 a day Child Care Plan, increasing and indexing the minimum wage, increasing affordable housing options for families, and improving the affordability of post-secondary education.

The BC NDP had initially introduced a private member’s bill three separate times to the Legislature in 2011, and 2014 to implement such proposals, but the present provincial government did not support the bills.

Nathan Cullen’s Take Back Our Coast campaign in Vancouver

NDP MP Nathan Cullen answering questions about Enbridge Pipeline at UBC Robson Square. (PIC: Jonny Kidney)

NDP MP Nathan Cullen answering questions about Enbridge Pipeline at UBC Robson Square. (PIC: Jonny Kidney)

NDP house leader, Nathan Cullen made a stop in Vancouver yesterday to talk about his Take Back Our Coast campaign.

After touring parts of BC, the Skeena-Buckley Valley NDP MP’s last stop was UBC Robson Square to discuss the opposition of the Enbridge Northern Gateway Project and how people can get involved with the cause.

Cullen also had advice for students of trades programs in BCIT who are getting their education and training with the hopes of working in particular fields, some of which connected to oil and gas.

“I would hope that it’s not just a job, but that people bring their morals and values to work – that they don’t want to be implicated with something that desperately hurts people.”

Cullen believes that everyone is entitled to stand up for what they believe in.

“Everyone has their own code. Let’s get together and talk about the ethics in our industries. I think that would be a good way to get into an affinity group. Rather than coming in with big signs and saying, how could you possibly think of working for the oil people?”

Cullen says the Enbridge Northern Gateway pipeline poses a significant risk to our environment and threatens thousands of good jobs. He says over 60% of British Columbians are against the pipeline, and he hopes to help raise awareness.

Cullen made stops in Victoria, Duncan, Courtney, Campbell river and Powell River, before his final destination in Vancouver.

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