PORTAGE la PRAIRIE, MB –
Forget the Jones’, moms and dads are finding it harder to keep up with the kid’s lifestyles than ever before according to new government stats.
7 out of 10 parents, or 70% of adults with children can no longer afford the lifestyle their kids enjoy.
“We found that the disposable income of working adult parents has not kept up with the spending of their corresponding children,” head statistician Genevieve Meeches said. “Even kids at home with no jobs are getting to spend more on items like eating out, clothes, entertainment and vacations than their parents.”
The government is promising to look at economic assistance programs and tax breaks to help parents close the wealth gap with their children.
On average, a teen living at home spends $1,232.00 a month on items solely for their own enjoyment and entertainment while the average parent spends $378 on the same things.
“Children are enjoying unprecedented levels of wealth when it comes to disposable income,” Meeches explained. “Essentially all the money they have they get to spend on themselves while parents have the unfortunate burden of mortgages, car payments, tuition, utilities, credit card bills and repair bills.”
The report shows parents now have to say no to things like eating out, spending money on entertainment and must drive older vehicles just to survive. Many times parents are forced to save for things their children freely enjoy.
The economic gap between the spending power of teens and their parents is at an all-time high and growing each year.
“If the government doesn’t step in to help parents they may soon never be able to afford the lifestyle so many teens enjoy,” Meeches warned.
“As a parent of three teenagers I have felt the pain of not being able to do the things I see my kids do every week,” Portage la Prairie parent Jules Vernon explained. “We just can’t go to all the parties, concerts and wear the latest clothes anymore. It does hurt that we see our kids be able to do these things while we can’t. ”
“It’s not fair at all,” Portager Peter Rasmussen offered. “People living under the same roof shouldn’t have to endure such wealth disparity. It’s time the government did something to correct this.”
“I wish I had it as good as my kids,” mother of two, Tracy Bergson said. “I work 60 hours a week and get to spend about fifty bucks on myself. My kids go to school when they feel like it and spend about 250 dollars a week on food and video games.”
Parents in Portage la Prairie are considering staging protests to raise awareness. A march and sit in will call on all levels of government to act to close the gap.
“Some might say the parents have caused the problem themselves by giving their children so much without expecting them to earn money themselves but that would be an oversimplification,” Meeches said. “This is a complex problem with many layers and issues to look at. Kids have a certain expectation nowadays and there are severe social pressures. This problem will take a long time and an abundance of money to solve.”
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