Editorial: Kids living in poverty—believe it

A new report puts the spotlight on a hidden problem that is prevalent in Kelowna

When you hear a report about the fact one in five kids in the Central Okanagan are living in poverty, it should serve as a wake-up call for all of us.

It’s time to get our heads out of the sand and start realizing what this four-season playground is doing to anyone who isn’t worried about closing tax loopholes, hence making enough to play in whatever sandbox they want.

We may live in a desirable spot with plenty of places to toss cash around, but for a growing number of people in this area, including our youngest and most vulnerable, there is only one season of the year and that’s called poverty.

There is a great divide in our fair city between the haves and the have-nots. The haves spend their days at the golf course or the ski hill, or maybe the winery or the brew pub talking about the first-world problems they face everyday.

But for many in our community, there are no first-world problems, there are just major issues of putting food on the table and a roof over your head.

With home prices rising steadily (page A3), supporting a real estate industry that has been thriving for years and allowing the rich to get richer, there are those that are falling through the cracks.

Rents are out of control, landlords don’t seem to care, developers continue to build massive houses and high rise condos that will never be affordable by low-income earners any many in the middle class.

Yes Kelowna is a great place to live, but people need to wake up to the reality and the hardship that more and more of us are living through.

According to the Central Okanagan Early Years Partnership (page A3), the biggest problem with child poverty is you can’t see it and many people don’t believe it exists.

But it’s time to wake up to reality of where we live and the social issues that are all around us. If you don’t know there’s a problem with child poverty, you are part of the problem.

Kelowna might be a four season playground but for many it’s a four-season dead end.

To report a typo, email: edit@kelownacapnews.com.


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