Cost of Family Breakdown
- By Sam George
- Published 05/4/2008
Sam George is the Executive Director of PARIVAR International - a non-profit initiative to address the needs of youth and families of Asian Indian origin in North America and to the Asian Indian community worldwide. Parivar means family in many Indian languages. Sam George also serves as one of the founding directors of Urban India Ministries
www.UrbanIndia.org Sam George and his wife, Mary have spoken at premarital and family events in many countries. They are parents of two boys and make their home in the northern suburbs of Chicago. Sam is the author of the book “Understanding the Coconut Generation: Ministry to the Americanized Asian Indians." Check out this website www.CoconutGeneration.com Coconut (brown on the outside, white on the inside) is a metaphor for the Americanized Asian Indians. Sam George can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org
Finally numbers are out. First of its kind assessment how much does it cost the goverment (hence the taxpayers) as a result of family disintegration, particularly divorce and out of wedlock childbirth. A whopping $112 Billion a year!
A very sobering reminder how family fragmentation is so expensive to everyone. The study was done by the Institute for American Values, a Washington DC based family organization and along with few other family agencies. See the reports here.
Between 1970 and 2005, the percentage of children being raised in two-parent families dropped from 85 to 68 percent. Divorce and alternative marriages continue to plague the Western society. Anti-family agenda is undermining communities and nations. Weakening in the most basic unit of the society has far-reaching implications.
This cost arise from increased taxpayer expenditures for antipoverty, criminal justice, and education programs, and through lower levels of taxes paid by individuals who, as adults, earn less because of reduced opportunities as a result of having been more likely to grow up in poverty.
Whatever be the cost figures, it proves there are family fragmentation has communal and national implications. When people pursue their own happiness, even at the expense of their mate and children, rest of the society pays a dear price. So they and their elected officials must come in the aid of keep it from fragmenting in the first place.
The policymakers, state legislators, and federal agencies must take keen interest in marriage and family issues. Stable marriage helps everyone. We all must resolve to committed to marriage strengthening initiatives at community level and supportive of government programs as well. Faith groups have crucial role to play, not just in conducting wedding but to help them stay married!