Food Insecurity amid the COVID-19 Pandemic: Food Charity, Government Assistance, and Employment

To mitigate the effects of the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic, the federal government has implemented several financial assistance programs, including unprecedented funding to food charities. Using the Canadian Perspectives Survey Series 2, the demographic, employment, and behavioural characteristics associated with food insecurity in April–May 2020 was examined. One-quarter of job-insecure individuals experienced food insecurity that was strongly associated with pandemic-related disruptions to employment income, major financial hardship, and use of food charity was found, yet the vast majority of food-insecure households did not report receiving any charitable food assistance. Increased financial support for low-income households would reduce food insecurity and mitigate negative repercussions of the pandemic.



Why the Time is Right for a Guaranteed Income with an Equity Lens

Over 50+ mayors in the United States have joined a national initiative Mayor’s for Guaranteed Income (MGI). Many advocates and practitioners now believe the moment has arrived for a guaranteed Income with an equity lens. In this webinar, perspectives from a diverse group of thought leaders involved in GI initiatives including practitioners, government representatives and philanthropy were heard. Panelists shared outcomes and new research results from some of the most successful GI pilots in the country (Stockton and Mississippi); goals for the newly launched Mayor’s for Guaranteed Income; how philanthropy can play a catalytic role and what this moment tells us about the future of guaranteed income initiatives.



Guaranteed Income Community of Practice resources

The Guaranteed Income Community of Practice (GICP) convenes guaranteed income stakeholders, including policy experts, researchers, community and program leaders, funders, and elected officials to learn and collaborate on guaranteed income pilots, programs and policy.

The GICP website includes resources on:

  • GICP fact sheets and briefs
  • video curriculum
  • program design resources
  • task force reports and agendas
  • program evaluations and income research
  • literature reviews
  • policy, books, articles, films

 



Impact of the COVID-19 Crisis on Montreal “Cultural Communities”

This exploratory study aims to better understand the challenges experienced by members of cultural communities in Montreal, particularly the most disadvantaged groups, during the COVID-19 pandemic in the Spring of 2020.



Barriers to Digital Equality in Canada

Internet is an essential service. As technology increasingly shapes our world, it is important that Canadians can keep up with the rapid changes, latest skills and emerging industries. Unfortunately, not every resident of Canada is able to access these opportunities to unlock a potentially brighter future.

AIC and ACORN partnered to undertake research with low and moderate income Canadians, in order to uncover the barriers to digital equity that exist in Canada today and shine a light on the urgent need to tackle these barriers to ensure equal access to digital opportunities.



The relationship between COVID-19 pandemic and people in poverty: Exploring the impact scale and potential policy responses

This research project aims to identify the relationship between COVID-19 pandemic and poverty in Vancouver, by analyzing how the COVID-19 pandemic has pushed people into poverty and the impact of COVID-19 on people already living in poverty. Several examples of COVID-19 recovery policies and projects being implemented elsewhere that could support people experiencing poverty in Vancouver are also provided.



Control, Sufficiency, and Social Support Lessons from Low-income Canadians about Financial Wellbeing

This report examines how diary participants achieve the financial wellbeing that they have. The evidence we found is that low-income people work very hard to manage their finances. They endeavor to control their finances so that, as one participant said, their finances don’t control them. They must prioritize needs and wants because there is not enough for both. One participant talked about her goal of having a ‘little bit more’ than her needs so that there was a little extra for savings or small purchases or trips. Finally, we saw that family and friends are terribly important for achieving financial wellbeing because social supports can provide loans, gifts, and emotional support. Having a low-income means that banks offer few financial supports. Of course, family and friends also make demands.

Proposals for a Northern Market Basket Measure and its disposable income

As stated in the Poverty Reduction Act, the Market Basket Measure (MBM) is now Canada’s Official Poverty Line. The Northern Market Basket Measure (MBM-N) is an adaptation of the MBM that reflects life and conditions in two of the territories – Yukon and Northwest TerritoriesNote. As with the MBM, the MBM-N is comprised of five major components: food, clothing, transportation, shelter and other necessities. The MBM-N is intended to capture the spirit of the existing MBM (i.e., represent a modest, basic standard of living) while accounting for adjustments to the contents of the MBM to reflect life in the North.

This discussion paper describes a proposed methodology for the five components found in the MBM-N, as well as its disposable income. This discussion paper also provides an opportunity for feedback and comments on the proposed methodology of the MBM-N.



Impacts of the Covid-19 Pandemic on Women: Report of the Standing Committee on the Status of Women

The effects of the COVID-19 pandemic have been profound and far-reaching. Beyond endangering the health of Canadians, the pandemic has worsened inequalities among groups of people. Women, girls and gender-diverse people have faced unique challenges during the pandemic.

The Committee recommends that the Government of Canada take various actions to assist women, girls and gender-diverse people during and after the COVID-19 pandemic. Many recommendations relate to improving women’s health and labour force participation. Some recommendations focus specifically on women’s paid and unpaid care work. The Committee also recommends interventions to help reduce trafficking and violence against women.



Budget 2021: A Recovery Plan for Jobs, Growth, and Resilience



Building Understanding: The First Report of the National Advisory Council on Poverty

In August 2018, the Government of Canada announced Opportunity for All – Canada's First Poverty Reduction Strategy. The Strategy included a commitment to the UN Sustainable Development Goal's target of reducing poverty by 20% by 2020 and 50% by 2030. Opportunity for All included the adoption of the Market Basket Measure (MBM) as Canada's Official Poverty Line and the creation of the National Advisory Council on Poverty (Council) to report on progress made toward the poverty reduction targets.

This is the first report of the National Advisory Council on Poverty. It continues Canada's discussion on poverty by bringing forward the voices of individuals with lived expertise of poverty. It details progress toward our poverty targets and recommends improvements to our poverty reduction efforts.



Opportunity for All – Canada’s First Poverty Reduction Strategy

Canada is a prosperous country, yet in 2015 roughly 1 in 8 Canadians lived in poverty. The vision of Opportunity for All – Canada's First Poverty Reduction Strategy is a Canada without poverty, because we all suffer when our fellow citizens are left behind. We are all in this together, from governments, to community organizations, to the private sector, to all Canadians who are working hard each and every day to provide for themselves and their families.

For the first time in Canada's history, the Strategy sets an official measure of povertyCanada's Official Poverty Line, based on the cost of a basket of goods and services that individuals and families require to meet their basic needs and achieve a modest standard of living in communities across the country.

Opportunity for All sets, for the first time, ambitious and concrete poverty reduction targets: a 20% reduction in poverty by 2020 and a 50% reduction in poverty by 2030, which, relative to 2015 levels, will lead to the lowest poverty rate in Canada's history.

Through Opportunity for All, we are putting in place a National Advisory Council on Poverty to advise the Minister of Families, Children and Social Development on poverty reduction and to publicly report, in each year, on the progress that has been made toward poverty reduction.

The Government also proposes to introduce the first Poverty Reduction Act in Parliament in Canada’s history. This Act would entrench the targets, Canada's Official Poverty Line, and the Advisory Council into legislation.



Yukon Poverty Report Card 2020

This report was released as part of public education movement Campaign 2000's annual assessment of child and family poverty in Canada, providing an overview of the following key issues relating to poverty in Yukon:

  • the housing crisis and the challenge of food insecurity with a focus of the disproportionate impact on children and youth, Indigenous peoples, and others.
  • an overview of previous initiatives and ongoing work that can be leveraged to support a comprehensive approach to reducing poverty in the Yukon.
  • a description of some successful community-driven initiatives that are supporting improvements in the health and wellness of Yukoners.
  • ten recommendations including several policy proposals to improve the health and wellness of children, youth, and families specifically.



The Cost of Poverty in the Atlantic Provinces

This report costs poverty based on three broad measurable components: opportunity costs, remedial costs and intergenerational costs. The authors state that these costs could potentially be reallocated, and benefits could potentially be realized if all poverty were eliminated. The total cost of poverty in the Atlantic region ranges from $2 billion per year in Nova Scotia to $273 million in Prince Edward Island. It is close to a billion in Newfoundland and Labrador, $959 million, and $1.4 billion in New Brunswick. These costs represent a significant loss of economic growth of 4.76% of Nova Scotia’s GDP to 2.9% in Newfoundland and Labrador. The impact on Prince Edward Island’s GDP is 4.10%, and 3.71% in New Brunswick.
The purpose of this costing exercise is to illustrate the shared economic burden of poverty, and the urgency that exists for Atlantic Canadian governments to act to eradicate it.



Distributional and Fiscal Analysis of a National Guaranteed Basic Income

Several parliamentarians requested that the PBO prepare a distributional analysis of Guaranteed Basic Income using parameters set out in Ontario’s basic income pilot project, examine the impact across income quintiles, family types and gender, and identify the net federal revenue increase required to offset the net cost of the new program. This analysis also accounts for the behavioural response.



Overcoming Digital Divides Workshop Series: Framing Paper

Canada’s digital divide has often been narrowly defined as the gap that exists between urban and rural broadband internet availability — Canadian urban centres have significantly greater internet subscription levels at faster speeds than rural communities.(Government of Canada, 2019). The cost of building new internet infrastructure in less developed areas continues to impede equitable access to sufficient internet services.

This series aims to engage people living in Canada, industry, academia and policymakers to advance a deeper, more nuanced understanding of the circumstances that precipitate the conditions that shape digital inequities in Canada. Through expert panel discussions and thoughtful participatory dialogue, the series aims to drive toward innovative solutions to greater digital inclusion across Canada. The series will be presented in six parts, each tackling a specific theme with unique concerns. The series will also build on intersectional connections across themes while identifying new issues and impacted communities. 



Low income measure (LIM) thresholds by income source and household size

Low income measure (LIM) thresholds by household size for market income, total income and after-tax income, in current and constant dollars, annual.



COVID-19 in Canada: A One-year Update on Social and Economic Impacts

This summary provides highlights on the work the Agency has and is undertaking using existing and new data sources to provide critical insights on the social and economic impacts of COVID-19 on Canadians. It covers the first year of the pandemic from March 2020 to March 2021.



Study: Association between food insecurity and stressful life events among Canadian adults

The COVID-19 pandemic and the related business closures and lockdowns have given rise to a series of unprecedented socioeconomic and health-related challenges, one of which is increasing food insecurity.

Throughout the pandemic, Statistics Canada has continued to collect and release data on food insecurity in Canada—including exploring the link between food insecurity and mental healthfinancial stability and Indigenous people living in urban areas.

This study looks at the characteristics of food insecure Canadians, focusing on how losing a job, suffering an injury or illness, or a combination of events can increase the risk of food insecurity. This release compares the food security outcomes of two different subpopulations: those who had experienced a stressful life event and those who had not.



Trends in Intergenerational Income Mobility and Income Inequality in Canada

In this paper, administrative Canadian tax data are exploited to compute measures of intergenerational income mobility at the national, provincial and territorial levels. This work provides detailed descriptive evidence on trends in social mobility. Five cohorts of Canadians, born between 1963 and 1985, are observed as teens living with their parents and again as adults in their late 20s and early 30s.



Social Listening: Covid-19, Social Media, and The Path to a Better Safety Net

This brief outlines how beneficiaries are using online platforms to identify breakdowns in public services, celebrate the positive impact of public policy and urge reform. Ways in which government can capitalize on widespread social media feedback and begin to build long-term measures to center people’s experience as an important component of policy design are explored.



Economic Security Programs Reduce Overall Poverty, Racial and Ethnic Inequities

Economic security programs such as Social Security, food assistance, tax credits, and housing assistance can help provide opportunity by ameliorating short-term poverty and hardship and, by doing so, improving children’s long-term outcomes. Over the last half-century, these assistance programs have reduced poverty for millions of people in the United States — including children, who are highly susceptible to poverty’s ill effects.

At the same time, barriers to opportunity, including discrimination and disparities in access to employment, education, and health care, remain enormous and keep poverty rates much higher for some racial and ethnic groups than others. While government programs have done much to narrow these disparities in poverty, further progress will require stronger government efforts to reduce poverty and discrimination and build opportunity for all.



The Inequality of Poverty

This report explores the connections between low income, poverty and protected characteristics, how these can shape the experience of poverty, and whether this can result in a similar inequality in terms of when and how poverty premiums are incurred. COVID-19 has thrown light on the link between insecure work, low incomes and protected characteristics, with an opportunity for this link to be formally recognised. The pandemic, and the economic consequences look likely to throw many more people into poverty, and this poverty is falling hardest on those with protected characteristics.

Pandemic to Prosperity – January 21, 2021: One year after the first announcement of Covid on U.S. soil

The National Conference on Citizenship (NCoC) developed the Pandemic to Prosperity series. It builds on NCoC’s data infrastructure and advocacy network developed for its national Civic Health Index, with The New Orleans Index, which informed many public and private decisions and actions post-Katrina. This series is designed to enable a solid understanding of the damage to lives and livelihoods as the pandemic continues to unfold, as the United States enters the era of vaccines, and the nation grapples with new shocks and stressors such as disasters and civil unrest; it will also examine aspirational goals around strong and accountable government, functioning institutions from child care to internet access to local news availability, effective civic participation, and outcomes for people by race regarding employment, health, housing, and more. With each new report in the series, indicators will change as the recovery transitions. This report highlights mostly state-level metrics with breakdowns by race, gender, and age where available, relying on both public and private data sources.



Together BC: British Columbia’s Poverty Reduction Strategy

 British Columbia’s Poverty Reduction Strategy, sets a path to reduce overall poverty in B.C. by 25% and child poverty by 50% by 2024.

With investments from across Government, TogetherBC reflects government’s commitment to reduce poverty and make life more affordable for British Columbians. It includes policy initiatives and investments designed to lift people up, break the cycle of poverty and build a better B.C. for everyone.

Built on the principles of Affordability, Opportunity, Reconciliation, and Social Inclusion, TogetherBC focuses on six priority action areas:

  • More affordable housing for more people
  • Supporting families, children and youth
  • Expanding access to education and training
  • More opportunities, more jobs
  • Improving income supports
  • Investing in social inclusion



Mapping Toronto’s Digital Divide

This report analyzes Toronto's home internet and device access, quality, affordability, and usage, during pandemic closures of businesses, schools, and community organizations.

Read this report to help you:

  • Understand the demographics and geographies of who is not connected or cannot afford home internet in Toronto, with comparisons to provincial and national data, how they get online, and where in Toronto they live. 
  • Unpack the digital divide beyond basic access: speed, affordability, quality, and devices per household member.
  • Identify gaps in existing programs and services meant to close the digital divide.



Food insecurity and mental health during the COVID-19 pandemic

Canadians living in households that experienced food insecurity (insecure or inadequate access to food because of financial constraints) during the early months of the COVID-19 pandemic were significantly more likely to perceive their mental health as fair or poor and to report moderate or severe anxiety symptoms than Canadians in food-secure households. Approximately one in seven Canadians (14.6%) were estimated to live in a food-insecure household in May 2020.

This study, released in Health Reports, is the first to examine the association between household food insecurity and self-perceived mental health and anxiety among Canadians during the COVID-19 pandemic. The study also estimated that 9.3% of Canadians living in food-insecure households reported having recently accessed free food or meals from a community organization.



The Pivotal Role of Human Service Practitioners in Building Financial Capability

This report shares remarks by Mae Watson Grote, Founder and CEO of The Financial Clinic, at the Coin A Better Future conference in May 2018.

The journey from financial insecurity to security, and eventually, mobility—what we conceptualize and even romanticize as the quintessential American experience—is one that far too often ensnares people at the insecurity stage, particularly those communities or neighborhoods that have historically been marginalized and deliberately excluded from the traditional pathway towards prosperity. Fraught with debt and credit crises, alongside a myriad of predatory products and lending practices, to a sense of stigma and shame many Americans feel because of their economic status, financial insecurity involves navigating a world on a daily basis where everyday needs are at the mercy of unjust and uncontrollable variables.



Overcoming Poverty Together 3: The New Brunswick Economic and Social Inclusion Plan 2020-2025

The new Economic and Social Inclusion plan for New Brunswick builds upon progress accomplished over the past 10 years. It includes nine priority actions divided into three pillars:

  • Income Security: includes actions addressing improvements to social assistance, changes to the Employment Standards Act and an increase of the capacity and sustainability of social enterprises.
  • Co-ordination of Programs and Services: includes actions towards a review of government programs, services and tax policies targeted to low-income individuals, and the implementation of a One-Stop-Shop service to help New Brunswickers access information and navigate government and community programs and services.
  • Inclusion and Healthy Communities: includes actions bringing improvement to mental and addictions services, the development of regional transportation plans, work with partners to provide inclusive opportunities for recreation activities for New Brunswickers on a low income, and the development of food programs in all schools.

The objective of the plan is to reduce income poverty by at least 50 per cent by 2030, in line with the objectives of Opportunity for All, Canada’s first poverty reduction strategy, and those of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainability of the United Nations.



State of the Child Report 2019

This report's release was part of Child Rights Education Week and also in celebration of the 30th anniversary of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC). 2019 was declared the International Year of Indigenous Languages by the United Nations.

The report contains an overview of some of the serious challenges facing New Brunswick children and youth, including more than 200 statistics presented in the report’s Child Rights Indicators Framework. A special emphasis was placed on education rights.

Some of the concerning findings revealed in the report include:

  • nearly half of youths in poverty feel socially excluded;
  • half of all youths have no one they look up to; and
  • one in four youths with special needs does not feel that they belong at their school.



The Impact of COVID-19 on Women living with Disabilities in Canada

DisAbled Women’s Network (DAWNRAFH) Canada is a national, feminist, cross-disability organization whose mission is to end the poverty, isolation, discrimination and violence experienced
by Canadian women with disabilities and Deaf women.

People with disabilities, specifically women with disabilities face unique barriers related to Covid-19. This includes both the increased risk oftransmission and death from COVID-19, as well as the unique ways policies targeting COVID-19 impact this group. Prior to COVID-19 more than 50% of human rights complaints at the Federal, Provincial and Territorial levels in Canada for the last four years have been disability related, which speaks to systemic failures that have been exacerbated under COVID-19. In this brief, DAWN Canada highlights these unique considerations, as well as significant and existing policy gaps facing this group.



The poverty premium: a customer perspective

Fair By Design and Turn2Us (in the United Kingdom) commissioned this research to explore recent changes in the poverty premium landscape, to understand if they are having any impact on the cost of premiums, or the number of people who pay them. Importantly, we did this through the lens of the low-income customer in order to hear first-hand how they experience these extra costs; how they see the problems with the current system; how they respond to initiatives and interventions designed to reduce poverty premiums; and the changes they feel would make the most difference to them and their household.

This research report:

  • Describes recent initiatives to reduce the poverty premium and reviews any evidence of what works.
  • Re-calculates the level and types of poverty premiums paid by low-income households in 2019. We focus on high-cost credit use, energy tariffs and insurance (specifically home contents, car and specific item insurance) because our previous work identified these as potentially the most harmful to low-income households (Davies et al, 2016; Davies and Finney, 2017).
  • Looks in detail at the financial difficulties experienced by low-income households, their impact on individuals and families, and the things that prevent low-income households from getting a better deal.
  • Sets out ‘user-led’ solutions and ideas that people living in poverty feel could help to reduce the extra costs they pay.



Beyond Hunger: the hidden impacts of food insecurity

This report illustrates the hidden impacts of food insecurity in people’s lives through a survey of 561 people in 22 communities across Canada. The people interviewed shared that food insecurity makes them ill, breaks down relationships, makes it harder to get stable work, and fully participate in society.



Cities Reducing Poverty: 2020 Impact Report

The Vibrant Communities – Cities Reducing Poverty 2020 Impact Report is the Tamarack Institute's first attempt at capturing and communicating national trends in poverty reduction and the important ways in which member Cities Reducing Poverty collaboratives are contributing to those changes.

This impact report is meant for poverty reduction organizers and advocates, and public decision-makers to get a sense for how collaborative, multi-sectoral local roundtables with comprehensive plans contribute to poverty reduction in their communities and beyond; and spotlights high-impact initiatives that are demonstrating promising results.



Making Safety Affordable: Intimate Partner Violence is an Asset-Building Issue

This brief explores three existing unmet needs that contribute to survivors’ inability to build wealth: money, tailored asset-building support, and safe and responsive banking and credit services. Within each identified need, specific issues facing survivors, strategic actions in response to those issues, as well as innovative ideas and existing promising practices to help funders take action to prioritize survivor wealth are discussed.



Growing up in a lower-income family can have lasting effects

The infographic "Intergenerational income mobility: The lasting effects of growing up in a lower-income family" based on the article "Exploration of the role of education in intergenerational income mobility in Canada: Evidence from the Longitudinal and International Study of Adults," published in the Canadian Public Policy journal presents the effects of growing up in a lower-income family based on a longitudinal study of a cohort of Canadians born between 1963 and 1979.



Dimensions of Poverty Hub

The Dimensions of Poverty Hub, sponsored by Employment and Social Development Canada (ESDC), enables Canadians to track progress on poverty reduction. The updates as of September 2020 include poverty statistics based upon the new 2018-base Market Basket Measure (MBM).



Canada’s Forgotten Poor? Putting Singles Living in Deep Poverty on the Policy Radar

This report presents the findings of extensive research about employable singles on social assistance undertaken by Toronto Employment and Social Services, in partnership with the Ontario Centre for Workforce Innovation. Drawing on data from 69,000 singles who were receiving social assistance in Toronto in 2016, and 51 interviews with randomly selected participants, the report highlights these individuals’ characteristics, their complex needs, and the barriers they face in moving off social assistance and into employment. Complementing the quantitative analysis, the interviews provide important insights into the daily realities of participants’ lives and their journeys on and off assistance.



Impacts of COVID-19 on persons with disabilities

This article provides a general snapshot of the employment and income impacts of COVID-19 on survey participants aged 15 to 64 living with long-term conditions and disabilities.



Parents’ Incomes and Children’s Outcomes: A Quasi-experiment Using Transfer Payments from Casino Profits

This study examines the affect that an increase in household income, due to a government transfer unrelated to household characteristics, has on children's long-term outcomes. It is found that increased income increases children's educational attainment.



Hunger Lives Here: Risks and Challenges Faced by Food Bank Clients During COVID-19

This report provides quantitative and qualitative data about the experience of hunger and poverty in Toronto during COVID-19. Based on phone surveys with over 220 food bank clients in May and June 2020 and an analysis of food bank client intake data, the report demonstrates that COVID-19 has led to increased reliance on food banks. The rate of new clients accessing food banks has tripled since the pandemic began. Among new clients, 76% report that they began accessing food banks as a result of COVID-19 and the associated economic downturn.



How Are the Most Vulnerable Households Navigating the Financial Impact of COVID-19?

The COVID-19 pandemic has already had an unprecedented impact on the financial lives of households across the United States. During June and July 2020, Prosperity Now conducted a national survey of lower-income households to better understand the circumstances these households are confronted with and the strategies they use to secure resources to navigate this crisis.



Economic impact of COVID-19 among visible minority groups

Since visible minorities often have more precarious employment and higher poverty rates than the White population, their ability to adjust to income losses due to work interruptions is likely more limited. Based on a large crowdsourcing data collection initiative, this study examines the economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on visible minority groups.

Among the crowdsourcing participants who were employed prior to work stoppages, Whites and most visible minority groups reported similar rates of job loss or reduced work hours. However, visible minority participants were more likely than White participants to report that the COVID-19 pandemic had affected their ability to meet financial obligations or essential needs, such as rent or mortgage payments, utilities, and groceries.



Economic and Fiscal Snapshot 2020

The COVID-19 crisis is a public health crisis and an economic crisis. The Economic and Fiscal Snapshot 2020 lays out the steps Canada is taking to stabilize the economy and protect the health and economic well-being of Canadians and businesses across the country.



Why are lower-income parents less likely to open an RESP account? The roles of literacy, education and wealth

Parents can save for their children's postsecondary education by opening and contributing to a Registered Education Savings Plan (RESP) account, which provides tax and other financial incentives designed to encourage participation (particularly among lower-income families). While the share of parents opening RESP accounts has increased steadily over time, as of 2016, participation rates remained more than twice as high among parents in the top income quartile (top 25%) compared with those in the bottom quartile.

This study provides insight into the factors behind the gap in (RESP) participation between higher and lower-income families.



How does the Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB) impact eligibility of provincial benefits?

This policy backgrounder provides an overview of how provincial and territorial governments have decided to treat receipt of the Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB) for those receiving social assistance and/or living in subsidized housing. It also looks at provisions for youth aging out of care during the COVID-19 pandemic.



Locked down, not locked out: An eviction prevention plan for Ontario

Ontario tenants who have fallen behind on their rent because of COVID-19 will need provincial help to stay housed when the current eviction ban is lifted. A new analysis calls for targeted rent relief, a gradual easing of the eviction ban, and a reintroduction of rent controls.



Inequality in the feasibility of working from home during and after COVID-19

The economic lockdown to stop the spread of COVID-19 has led to steep declines in employment and hours worked for many Canadians. For workers in essential services, in jobs that can be done with proper physical distancing measures or in jobs that can be done from home, the likelihood of experiencing a work interruption during the pandemic is lower than for other workers.

To shed light on these issues, this article assesses how the feasibility of working from home varies across Canadian families. It also considers the implications of these differences for family earnings inequality.



Voice of Experience: Engaging people with lived experience of poverty in consultations

The engagement of Canadians with lived experiences of poverty in government consultations on poverty reduction is critical. But as hard as governments work to try to include people living in poverty as full participating members in their consultation processes, there are many barriers that continue to impede their participation. This paper explores what these barriers and impediments are.

Canadian Income Survey, 2018

This report from Statistics Canada shares data on median after-tax income and overall poverty rate decline based on 2018 data. 

Basic Income: Some Policy Options for Canada

As the need for basic income grows, the Basic Income Canada Network (BICN) is often asked how Canada could best design and pay for it. To answer that in a detailed way, BICN asked a team to model some options that are fair, effective and feasible in Canada. The three options in this report do just that. The three options demonstrate that it is indeed possible for Canada to have a basic income that is progressively structured and progressively funded. BICN wants governments, especially the federal government, to take this seriously—and to act.



Community Benefits of Supportive Housing

This report highlights mostly B.C.-based research and includes key information, facts, and statistics to answer common questions that neighbours, local government, and other stakeholders may have about supportive housing. The easy-to-read question and answer format also includes infographics to showcase the benefits of supportive housing in neighbourhoods across British Columbia and beyond.



State of homelessness in Canada 2016

Ending homelessness in Canada requires partnerships across public, private, and not-for-profit sectors. Preventative measures, and providing safe, appropriate, and affordable housing with supports for those experiencing homelessness is needed. 

This paper provides a series of joint recommendations – drafted by the Canadian Observatory on Homelessness and the Canadian Alliance to end Homelessness – for the National Housing Strategy.



Working Without a Net: Rethinking Canada’s social policy in the new age of work

This report explores the implications of new technologies on Canada’s economy and labour market and the adequacy of current social programs and policies supporting workers.



Economic volatility in childhood and subsequent adolescent mental health problems: a longitudinal population based study of adolescents

This research paper investigates the association between the patterns of duration, timing and sequencing of exposure to low family income during childhood, and symptoms of mental health problems in adolescence.



Associations of Income Volatility With Incident Cardiovascular Disease and All-Cause Mortality in a US Cohort

Income volatility is increasing in the United States and presents a growing public health problem. This study examines associations of long-term income volatility  with incident cardiovascular disease and all-cause mortality.




Defining Disposable income in the Market Basket Measure

This paper discusses the concept of disposable income used in the MBM. Disposable income is a measure of the means available to a Canadian family to meet its basic needs and achieve a modest standard of living. The disposable income of families surveyed in the Canadian Income Survey (CIS) is compared to the cost of the MBM basket for the size of the family and the region, and families with disposable incomes below that cost are deemed to be living in poverty.



Canada’s Colour Coded Income Inequality

Canada’s population is increasingly racialized. The 2016 census counted 7.7 million racialized individuals in Canada. That number represented 22% of the population, up sharply from 16% just a decade earlier. Unfortunately, the rapid growth in the racialized population is not being matched by a corresponding increase in economic equality. This paper uses 2016 census data to paint a portrait of income inequality between racialized and non-racialized Canadians. It also looks at the labour market discrimination faced by racialized workers in 2006 and 2016. 

These data provide a glimpse of the likely differences in wealth between racialized and non-racialized Canadians. This paper also explores the relationship between race, immigration and employment incomes.

Taken together, the data point to an unequivocal pattern of racialized economic inequality in Canada. In the absence of bold policies to combat racism, this economic inequality shows no signs of disappearing.



System transformation in Ontario Works: Considerations for Ontario

This paper focuses on proposed system transformation in Ontario Works, and explores the possibilities and limitations associated with the proposed changes in 2018. First, it looks at the broader context within which the government’s social assistance reforms are taking place. Second, it provides an overview of what is known about some of the structural changes in social assistance to date, as well as an overview of experiences in other jurisdictions that have undertaken similar reforms. In conclusion, the paper outlines some key considerations and unresolved questions that the government will need to address before it can move forward with a plan for reform.



Creating a Strong Foundation for Change

This guide is designed to be a resource for programs working with low income families to use when anticipating or implementing a new approach, such as coaching, to doing business. It helps you to systematically – and honestly – look at your foundational readiness for change, so that the improvements you want to make will take root and grow in fertile ground. Making time and space to look deeply into your organization can offer the opportunity to reconsider what quality service delivery looks like, help you discover how coaching (or other techniques) could be a tool, and plan efficiently on where it fits best into your existing context.



Removing Savings Penalties for Temporary Assistance for Needy Families

This brief discusses the savings penalties in public assistance programs in the United States, also known as asset limits, and that actions that can be taken to eliminate these limits and the barriers towards building savings for families living on low income.



Running in Place: Why the Racial Wealth Divide Keeps Black and Latino Families From Achieving Economic Security

This report examines data from the Federal Reserve System’s 2016 Survey of Consumer Finances to understand how the wealth of median Black, Latino and White families have changed since the findings of its previous survey were released in 2013.



Chronic Low Income Among Immigrants in Canada and its Communities

This study examines the rate of chronic low income among adult immigrants (aged 25 or older) in Canada during the 2000s. Data is taken from the Longitudinal Immigration Database (IMDB) for the period from 1993 to 2012, with regional adjustments used for the analysis. Chronic low income is categorized as having a family income under a low-income cut-off for five consecutive years or more. 

The study found that for immigrants were in in low-income in any given year, half were in chronic low-income. Including spells of low income which become chronic in later years, this number rises to two-thirds. The highest chronic rates were found in immigrant seniors and immigrants who were unattached or lone parents. Chronic low income is a large component of income disparity and overall low income among immigrants.



The Who’s Hungry Report

The Who’s Hungry Report provides quantitative and qualitative data about the experience of hunger and poverty in Toronto. To create the reports, trained volunteers conduct face-to-face interviews with over 1,400 food bank clients at nearly 40 member agencies, collecting demographic data as well as information about the day-to-day experience of living with hunger.



Poverty Trends 2018 report

This annual report on poverty in Canada reports that a staggering 5.8 million people in Canada (or 16.8%) live in poverty. The report uses several low-income indicators, including the Low-Income Measure (LIM), the Census Family Low Income Measure (CFLIM) and the Market Basket Measure (MBM). Each measure of low income provides different information on poverty using different methodologies to calculate rates of poverty.

 



State of Cities Reducing Poverty

How has the Vibrant Communities – Cities Reducing Poverty (VC – CRP) network contributed to poverty reduction in Canada? In seeking to answer this central question, the State of Cities Reducing Poverty paper highlights the network’s numerous and varied impacts.



2018 Report Card on Child and Family Poverty in Canada: Bold Ambitions for Child and Family Poverty Eradication

The 2018 national report card “Bold Ambitions for Child Poverty Eradication in Canada,” provides a current snapshot of child and family poverty and demonstrates the need for a costed implementation plan to eradicate child poverty in this generation.

In advance of the 30th year of the all-party commitment to eliminate child poverty by the year 2000 and the federal election in 2019, our spotlight is on the central role of universal childcare in the eradication of child poverty. The lack of affordable, high quality childcare robs children of valuable learning environments and keeps parents, mainly women, out of the workforce, education and training. Without childcare, parents cannot lift themselves out of poverty and improve their living standards.



What does poverty look like in Canada? Survey finds one-in-four experience notable economic hardship

What does it mean to be poor in Canada? Does it mean having to rely on food banks and payday loans to make ends meet? Does it mean struggling to afford warm clothes for the winter? What about having to live far away from work or school?

A new, two-part study from the Angus Reid Institute examines the state of poverty in Canada by looking at lived experiences, rather than income, with some striking results.



Financial Empowerment and Alleviating Poverty in Canada: A concept paper

An Evaluation of the Impacts and Implementation Approaches of Financial Coaching Programs


Increasing interest in the role that consumer-focused policy interventions can play in improving economic outcomes has led to a host of intervention models in recent years. Financial coaching has emerged as one prominent model in this field, aimed at improving consumer financial outcomes by using regular one-on-one sessions to set goals and plan concrete steps to meet and manage those goals over time. Unlike counseling, coaching takes a client-driven approach; instead of focusing on solving particular problems, the coach provides a framework for the client to meet his or her goals.




Financial Empowerment: What it is and how it helps to reduce poverty


Financial Empowerment is an integrated set of interventions proven to measurably improve financial outcomes for people living in poverty. This brief from Prosper Canada recommends nine financial empowerment strategies that can help reduce poverty by being integrated into poverty reduction strategies across Canada.





Poverty Trends Scorecard – Fact Sheet Series – Income, Wealth, and Inequality

The Widening Academic Achievement Gap Between the Rich and the Poor: New Evidence and Possible Explanations

Participation of Low-Income Students in Ontario

Creating Mobility from Poverty: An Overview of Strategies

Poverty Reduction and Disability Income

Portrait of Homelessness in First Nations Communities in Quebec

An Economy for the 1% – How privilege and power in the economy drive extreme inequality and how this can be stopped

Comparing Poverty Measures – Ontario

A Road Map to Eradicate Child & Family Poverty: 2016 Report Card on Child and Family Poverty in Canada

Low Income (‘Poverty’) Lines

The Cost of Poverty in Toronto

First Comprehensive Review of the Market Basket Measure of Low Income. Final Report

Towards a Poverty Reduction Strategy

Divided City: Life in Canada’s Child Poverty Capital. 2016 Toronto Child and Family Poverty Report Card

2016 BC Child Poverty Report Card

The statistics and stories in this report tell a painful truth about British Columbia
We like to think of ourselves as a caring, civilized society, but in fact we have
been tolerating and sustaining shameful levels of child and family poverty for
decade



Community Action to End Poverty

Closing the gap in a generation. Health equity through action on the social determinants of health

Break the Barriers: Millions in Canada still struggle to get by

A Game-changer Approach to Poverty Reduction Strategy and Evaluation

TOcore Community Services & Facilities Study Phase One: Taking Stock

Child Rich Communities: Aotearoa New Zealand’s ‘Bright Spots’

A Profile of the Working Poor – 2014

A Profile of the Working Poor – 2015

Poverty and disability: Looking inside a tie that really binds

Re-framing poverty as a matter of rights

The Very Poor and the Affordability of Housing

Toronto’s Vital Signs

Fact Sheet: Women and Poverty in Canada

Using low income and material deprivation to monitor poverty reduction

The Unequal City 2015: Income and Health Inequities in Toronto

The Unequal City 2015: Income and Health Inequities in Toronto – Technical Report

TO Prosperity: Toronto Poverty Reduction Strategy

Taking Back Our Neighbourhoods: Mapping the Need for Neighbourhood Revitalization

The Opportunity Equation: Building opportunity in the face of growing income inequality

What can we learn about low-income dynamics in Canada from the Longitudinal Administrative Databank?

Community-led approaches to reducing poverty in neighbourhoods: A review of evidence and practice

Financial Empowerment: Proven Strategies for Reducing Poverty in Ontario

Children in Food Insecure Households

The Impact of Food Insecurity on Health

Monitoring Food Insecurity in Canada

Public Policy and Food Insecurity

A Life-Course Approach to Social Policy Analysis: A Proposed Framework. Discussion Paper

How Income Affects Health in Ontario

The Dollars and Sense of Solving Poverty

Evaluating Student Performance in Pathways to Education

Poverty Interrupted: Applying Behavioural Science to the Context of Chronic Scarcity

Poverty, Aspirations, and the Economics of Hope: A Framework for Study with Preliminary Results from the Oaxaca Hope Project

Hunger Count 2014: A Comprehensive Report on Hunger and Food Bank Use in Canada, and Recommendations for Change

The Town with No Poverty: The Health Effects of a Canadian Guaranteed Annual Income Field Experiment

Let’s Do This. Let’s End Child Poverty For Good. 2015 Report Card on Child and Family Poverty in Canada

Overcoming Poverty Together: The New Brunswick Economic and Social Inclusion Plan, 2014-2019

End Poverty in a Generation: A Road Map to Guide Our Journey

The burden of Poverty: A snapshot of poverty across Canada