Working to break the poverty cycle
TheStar.com – Opinion/Worth Repeating – Working to break the poverty cycle
December 4, 2008
The following is excerpted from Breaking the Cycle, the provincial government’s poverty reduction strategy, which was released yesterday:
We can break the cycle of poverty. That’s the conviction that sits at the heart of Ontario’s Poverty Reduction Strategy.
We all agree that the moral imperative for reducing poverty is clear: children should have the opportunity to succeed in life, and people facing challenges should be given the tools they need to get ahead.
We have another equally compelling rationale for reducing poverty: it’s the smart thing to do for our economy. An educated, healthy and employable workforce is critical to the economic future of this province.
That’s why we’ve developed a long-term poverty reduction plan that will focus first on giving children and their families the support they need to achieve their full potential.
It’s a plan that marks a bold new direction. It sets an aggressive target – reducing the number of children living in poverty by 25 per cent over 5 years.
It’s also the next logical step in the Ontario we have been building together for the past five years.
Signature investments in our education system mean that tens of thousands more kids are now staying in school each year instead of dropping out before graduation. This plan will set more kids on the ladder of opportunity so they can reach for success at school and beyond.
This plan is about believing in the potential of people living in poverty. It’s about giving families the resources and the tools to succeed so that our economy grows strong today and for generations to come. It’s about believing that if we create more opportunity, we’ll create more prosperity for everyone.
It is going to take a lot of hard work. And it’s going to take all of us: citizens, governments, the business community, and the non-profit sector working together.
But Ontario now has a plan to get there. Working together, we can break the cycle of poverty.