Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Tuesday Morning Links

This and that for your Tuesday reading.

- Patrick Flavin studies (PDF) the direct benefits that flow from giving people secure access to health care. And Daphne Bramham writes that the damage done by child poverty can be directly observed in educational outcomes:
Anyone who questions whether child poverty is real in British Columbia should go back to school.

Schools are at the nexus of various governments’ policy failures — high housing prices, low wages, low welfare rates, clusters of children who don’t learn English at home, inadequate mental health and addictions services.

Teachers see it in the faces of the kids who come to school hungry, ill-clothed with bed-bug bites and yawning because they haven’t got a decent bed to sleep in. Or it shows up in the absentee rates.
It’s not right that there are such gaps that vulnerable kids fall through.

And it bears emphasizing that schools have neither the mandate nor the money to fix these societal problems. But all until governments work together to fix the underlying problems, it’s left to teachers, principals, individuals and charities like The Vancouver Sun’s Adopt-a-School and others to fill those gaps.
- Catherine McIntyre makes the seemingly obvious point that the best of intentions in combating poverty won't help if they aren't matched with commensurate resources.

- But then, PressProgress reminds us that our most recent federal government wasn't the least bit inclined to provide even a minimal standard of living for Canadians - not even the sense of altruism needed to see one as worth pursuing.

- Alison exposes the Cons' astroturf attempt to put roadblocks in the way of a more fair electoral system. And David Climenhaga notes that Alberta's right is following the playbook of the Republicans and their puppetmasters in trying to swamp democracy with corporate cash.

- Finally, Toula Drimonis argues that we won't be able to achieve anything approaching reconciliation with indigenous peoples without facing up to Canada's shameful role in suppressing people and cultures.

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