Children Stuck In Middle Of Budget Crunch

DETROIT (WWJ) – A popular summer camp for children falls prey to Detroit budget woes. WWJ’s City Beat Reporter Vickie Thomas brings us the story.

Shernada Scott, whose children attend day camp at the Adams Butzel complex, is not happy that the camp may be shut down less than two weeks into the program.

“I got an email maybe the week before the camp started. I was very devastated. This is one of the true jewels in Detroit. This is the second year that my children have been going here,” Scott said.

Frustrated parents like Andrea Rogers and Kiana Spivey said things are really bad when it comes down to cutting summer camp for kids.

“It’s upsetting, you’re taking away from the kids. These same kids that need something to do for the summer are gonna be the same kids that are out robbing people now and getting into trouble,” Rogers said.

“They told us yesterday that Friday might be the last day. And I don’t know what we’re supposed to do with our children. I mean, most of the parents here at Adams Butzel spent the night outside back in May to get their child registered,” Spivey said.

If the camp is shut down and Spivey had her way, Mayor Dave Bing would have some company this summer.

“I suggested that to the camp, lets take [the kids] to the Manoogian Mansion or the mayor’s office,” Spivey said.

The children are just as unhappy about being caught in the middle of the budget crunch.

“I’m sorry that this camp is going to close down,” one young boy said.

“We get to go swimming and it would be a shame to see it close,” a little girl said.

Bing has said funding for recreation programs will be reduced, city parks will close and summer day camps for children will be eliminated if City Council votes to cut an additional $50 million beyond his $3.1 billion budget recommendation. Read more here.

Parents paid $400 per child and with the closure of the recreation programs looming, they are wondering if they will get their money back and what will happen to their children, whose hearts were set on playing at summer camp with their friends.

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