Site icon Florida Chamber of Commerce

Promoting Opportunity and Prosperity Takes on Greater Significance

Bradenton Herald, February 17, 2017
By Mark Wilson

As the 16th-largest economy in the world, creating one out of every 10 jobs in America, Florida is moving in the right direction.

Florida adds more than 1,000 new residents each day, and they add $879,000 in income every hour. This is the Florida many know – one that’s prosperous, creating jobs and economic opportunity.

Yet, there is a different reality for many Floridians. The state’s poverty rate for those under 18 is 23.4 percent – that’s 944,415 children living in poverty. More than 3 million Floridians are on food stamps and more than 57 percent of Florida’s students are eligible for free or reduced-price meals. More than 40,000 students between Pre-K and fifth grade are homeless.

Florida has led the way in economic growth and opportunity. We can and must do more to break the cycle of generational poverty by focusing on creating opportunities for all Floridians, especially those born into poverty.

The way forward has four components:

The way forward is not easy, but we must keep the conversation going and fight for solutions. This is one reason the Florida Chamber Foundation is bringing leaders together for our 2017 Prosperity Summit on May 10 in Tampa.

The Florida Chamber views the challenge of creating the opportunity for economic prosperity for all Floridians as one of economic and moral significance. If our state’s business and government leaders work together, putting politics aside, we can end generational poverty and put Floridians back to work and on the way to achieving their utmost potential.

When Florida wins, America wins.

Mark Wilson is the president and CEO of the Florida Chamber of Commerce.

Exit mobile version