Guest Author: responding to Michael Laws
- Bryan Bruce, Inside Child Poverty
Michael Laws. I don’t really want to start a chain of debate on this man’s opinion about child poverty because I have traversed all he has to say before. Nor do I want to fuel his talk show. But because he has attracted some attention recently on the child poverty issue here are my comments.
Yes there are SOME parents in New Zealand who are not as good as they should be.
Yes there are SOME parents who drink too much or take drugs .
Yes there is also a child abuse problem in New Zealand we need to address which is not the sole province of the poor.
But blaming and finger pointing and ” what parents ought to do” does not help the child who turns up hungry and cold to school.
A child does not get to choose its parents.
It is my view that our community has a responsibility to the well being of ALL of our children . That’s why I want to see healthy school meals in ALL of our schools so that our children enjoy the same right to healthy living that Swedish children get everyday.
I have not published Mr Laws piece or supplied the link to it because it is my policy as the editor of this page that I will not publish anyone who wants to shout ” Bad parent” over the head of a hungry child.
There are many,many parents who ( thanks to the economic decisions made by almost 30 years of Neo-Liberal driven governments) are just finding it very, very tough at the moment.
We need to ring fence our kids in these cruel times – not betray them by turning our backs on their most basic needs and closing their schools.
Yes parents should behave responsibly.
But so should we – they are OUR children, OUR future, OUR responsibility.
Chris Trotter: Not So Great Expectations
Fairfax Media: Inequality is now at its highest level
Fairfax Media: Hungry kids scavenge pig slops
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