Mary Clare Zak

Vancouver. This campaign holds both professional and personal meaning for me. In my Social Policy role with the City of Vancouver, I understand the evidence: that one in five residents in Vancouver are poor, that the gap between rich and poor in Canada is growing, and that this gap is wider in Vancouver than other urban centres. And what poverty means in the short and long term: weaker social bonds, a weaker economy, overall a weakened resilience to withstand socio-economic and ecological shocks, and importantly, the erosion of values that as Canadians we hold dear: things like democracy, equality and fairness.

Personally, this is one small thing I can do to contribute to the campaign – and to the understanding of my own privilege. Like the fact that I can buy myself a coffee every day and make healthy food choices – and realizing that my caffeine habit alone takes up the entire $18 per week….

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