Today, Olivier De Schutter, the UN Special Rapporteur on the right to food, released the full report on his country visit to Canada, which he made in May 2012. His insistence on national strategies for housing, poverty reduction, and food security can no longer be dismissed by the federal government.
News: Poverty in Canada
Universal Children's Day, November 20, was a day of creative action, learning, and reflection across the country on all the changes that are needed for the most impoverished children in Canada to live in dignity.
Twelve years ago, British Columbia & Newfoundland and Labrador shared the distinction of having some of the highest poverty rates in the country. Ten years later, Newfoundland had one of the lowest poverty rates amongst the provinces while BC still had the highest. What made the difference?
Last week, CPJ had the privilege of attending the kick-off reception for the All-Party Anti-Poverty Caucus (APC) on Parliament Hill. The APC will bring together parliamentarians, civil society organizations, community leaders, researchers, and other key stakeholders to find concrete solutions for reducing poverty. APC co-chair MP Jean Crowder expressed her thanks to the CPJ co-led Dignity for All campaign and acknowledged the role of our February 14th public event, “What’s Next? How do we Address Poverty in Canada”, in laying the groundwork for this non-partisan dialogue.
On Friday September 27, Joe and I attended a workshop in Pembroke titled ‘Creating a Better Future for Our Children’ which was focussed on poverty and the Social Determinants of Health. While I learned many interesting things and heard a lot of detailed statistics, the main theme of the day was definitely that poverty is bad for your health. Not surprised? Neither was I, but the information came from a perspective I had not considered before.
Now that we’ve passed the halfway point of the year, it’s a good time to check out some of the trends reported on in Bearing the Brunt, CPJ’s study of the recession and poverty. How is that recovery coming along?
Statistics reveal a mixed bag – some improving trends, and some discouraging ones. Overall, the picture is less robust than headlines about economic recovery would suggest. GDP may be growing steadily, but recovery has yet to trickle down to those who suffered most from the recession – the poor, economically vulnerable and unemployed.
Many Canadians have long celebrated the fact that everyone in Canada has access to free health care. The Canadian government is one of the world’s biggest spenders, proportionally, on national health care programs. But is all the spending making a difference? Is covering health care sufficient for the health and well being of all Canadians?
A new report issued from York University by Juha Mikkonen and Dennis Raphael, Social Determinants of Health: The Canadian Facts, shows that health and well being is determined by many social factors, not just the health care system itself.The report shows that the circumstances in which people live play a significant role in their health and well being.
Just over a year ago, in April 2009, Libby Davies (MP, Vancouver East) introduced her private member’s bill for a “Secure, Adequate, Accessible and Affordable Housing Act” (Bill C-304). If passed, this legislation will require the establishment of a national housing strategy. A strategy developed in consultation with the provinces and other stakeholders that guarantees the right to safe, secure, adequate, affordable and accessible housing for all Canadians.
Bill C-304 is currently on its way to third reading. If passed, it would serve as landmark legislation by acknowledging the right to housing. It would also provide a valuable model for future legislative efforts to address poverty, its causes, consequences, and complexities.
When the first wave of H1N1 hit this past spring, it was quickly apparent that this new strain of flu was not affecting people equally. Individuals of First Nations descent, particularly in the Prairie provinces, were disproportionately vulnerable to the virus.