Jamaica | Mar 14, 2023

Parents encouraged to include children in budget planning, says CAC

/ Our Today

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Consumer Affairs Commission

A budget is a plan that records an individual’s income and all that is spent, and the Consumer Affairs Commission (CAC) is encouraging parents and guardians to include children in the process when putting one together.

“When we start writing down these things… it’s amazing how more conscious we are in terms of our spending pattern, because we realise, ‘I may have to cut back on this’ or ‘I may have to increase my income in order to survive’,” said Dolsie Allen, chief executive officer at the CAC.

“It gives an idea of how we can manage ourselves.”

Allen said that getting children involved in the budget planning process will ensure they become aware of the family’s financial situation.

‘Family budget’. (iStock image)

“When they are part of the process, and they own the process, they will understand that Mommy and Daddy, or whoever their guardian is, really don’t have that amount of money to spend. So, they’ll be more conscious,” she said.

Allen noted that, very often, children place “great demands” on their parents, not knowing the budgetary constraints.

“They want everything and they want all the brand names, and they want to do all these things [and] go all these places,” she pointed out.

Chief Executive Officer at Consumer Affairs Commission, Dolsie Allen (Photo: JIS)

Budget Reviews and Accountability

Meanwhile, Latoya Halstead, communications director at the CAC, is encouraging consumers to review their budgets regularly and hold themselves accountable.

“Always hold yourself accountable or even have an accountability partner, because, at the end of the day, in our head, we know what we want, but this is the reality that’s facing us,” she said, noting that when under pressure an individual may make a decision that is not necessarily favourable for them.

The CAC is on a drive to help consumers become more informed about financial matters.

Communications Director at the Consumer Affairs Commission, Latoya Halstead.

CAC and World Consumer Rights Day

Tomorrow (March 15), which is observed as World Consumer Rights Day (WCRD), focus will be placed on financial literacy. The CAC will commemorate the day under the theme ‘Level Up: Manage Your Money’.

The CAC shared that several media activities will mark the observance, including a message from Senator Aubyn Hill, the minister of industry, investment and commerce.

There will also be discussions on topics such as credit report, budgeting, understanding interest rates, how to improve your income, debt management/reduction strategies and managing money (safety practices).

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