Yesterday we praised the additional resources made available this year for people with disabilities and those needing mental health services. These were historically important steps in addressing longstanding, pressing needs. Unfortunately it was not such a good year for children, yet another reminder of the confounding difficult we have addressing the needs of kids.
An end of the year report by the Wisconsin Council on Children and Families found one in five children in Wisconsin living below the poverty line. That’s over a quarter of a million kids, a total that continues to rise. Half of all African America children live in poverty. This is humiliating. And it is immoral. The consequences are devastating to every one of us.
The report includes recommendations for supporting poor families, addressing poverty at the neighborhood and community level and focusing on racial gaps. But as we look ahead to the New Year we also have an opportunity to make solving child poverty a civic, political and business priority for 2014. We can’t think of a better one.