ByJuly 23, 2020
The future to which we return must look different from the past. Not just in defending against an infectious virus, but also in resisting a society marred with poverty and ecological devastation.
COVID-19 has laid bare what we already knew about the precarity and inequity of our existing systems: millions were already living in poverty; climate change was already affecting northern communities’ access to food; a lack of affordable housing stock was already barring newcomers to Canada from successful economic integration; and inadequate funding and disputes between levels of government left many Indigenous communities without the healthcare they need.
CPJ joined Campaign 2000 and over 250 other groups and individuals in sending a letter calling on Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and the federal COVID Cabinet Committee to ensure children living in poverty from marginalized communities are central to the pandemic response and recovery plan.
CPJ has co-signed a letter to Finance Minister Bill Morneau, asking for the necessary commitments for pharmacare in this year’s federal budget.
Poverty in Canada is a crisis that needs to be prioritized. The fact that we do not see it this way betrays some of our deeply held beliefs about who is poor, why people are poor, and what (if any) are the responsibilities of governments and citizens to do something about it.
What does it mean to say we want to end poverty in Canada? More than an act of charity, this is a question of basic rights. Poverty forces people to make impossible choices about which of their basic needs will be met each day. Beyond just material deprivation, poverty seeds social exclusion that undermines people’s…