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Story on County's Poor, Hungry Children Brings Home Tragedy

January 06, 1991

I write in response to the article "Holes Seen in Safety Net for County's Children" (Dec. 20). I am a recent UC graduate and was under the impression that I live in a country where children are safe and secure. However, upon reading your article, I have learned that this is not the case.

In Orange County alone, 300,000 children live below the poverty level, including 710 homeless children, half whom are under the age of 5. I wonder who is responsible as I read this appalling news.

Have I made the right choices during elections? Have I voiced my concerns to my representatives? I understand that by supporting domestic programs, like WIC and Head Start, a long-term savings of $4 to every $1 invested is gained. Perhaps it is time to let go of short-term savings for real long-term gains.

UNICEF reports that worldwide 40,000 children die every day. Hunger issues are our issues and the issues of our children. At the World Summit for Children held last September, President Bush neglected to sign an international Convention on the Rights of the Child. The convention was signed by more than 71 attendees worldwide, and UNICEF reports over 80% of the world's leaders have committed to the convention. Mr. Bush has skirted the issue on a technicality.

It is time to hold our leaders, and ourselves, accountable for the lack of political will to end death due to hunger, malnutrition and diseases that are preventable in this country and abroad. Stop passing the buck to the next generation.

CHRISTINE D. HARTMAN, San Clemente

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