Investment In Our City’s Children Is Essential
October 9, 2012
By NYC Public Advocate Bill de Blasio
We live in the largest and most diverse city in America — but the gap between the wealthy and the working poor continues to grow dangerously. And as we speak, cities around the globe are fighting economic disparity by making deep investments in early education programs.
It’s time for us to catch up.
We must create a level playing field for all New Yorkers. We must develop a globally competitive economic workforce for the next generation. And the way forward is to make serious investments in our children’s education.
First, we need universal early education. In New York City, there are currently 50,000 children receiving little or no pre-K. Research has shown these are the most important education dollars we will ever spend — because early education is one of the best ways to determine future economic success and well-being. It’s time to make a real investment.
Second, we need to invest deeply in after-school programs to keep children off the streets during the critical hours when juvenile crime is committed — and to give our city’s working parents peace of mind. It’s time to offer substantial and city-wide after-school programs.
These investments are not optional. They are necessary for our city’s safety and economic future.
And these investments are not untenable. They can be paid for fairly and responsibly, by asking the wealthiest New Yorkers—the 1% who earn over $500,000 per year — to pay a little more so that our city’s next generation is a strong, globally competitive workforce.
It’s time to rebuild our working and middle class with solutions that not only repair a recession — but invest in a future.
Investing in our city’s children is the best way our city can rebuild, and rise together.