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Child Poverty: Political Party Responses to Campaign 2000

Today is the International Day for the Eradication of Poverty and in four days, polls will open for Canada’s 43rd federal election.

This year also marks 30 years since each federal party represented in the House of Commons committed to ending child poverty by the year 2000. There is no better time than the October 21 election to hold every party accountable to that commitment. Campaign 2000 sent an open letter to the leaders of every registered federal party asking to see their plans on eradicating child and family poverty in Canada. 

Since the all-party resolution was passed 30 years ago, Campaign 2000 has been developing a suite of achievable policy recommendations to put Canada on the track to eradicating child and family poverty.  These recommendations were outlined in our letter and each party was asked to respond directly to questions based on the recommendations. Nine responses were received, and of those, only one party, the Green Party, responded directly to the questions. The Liberal Party and NDP were the only other two parties who provided substantive responses related to poverty reduction.

Our report, Child Poverty by Federal Riding: the work ahead for Canada’s next Parliament, shows significant levels of child poverty in every federal riding across the country.  Child poverty is an everyday issue, and with the looming federal election, we have the opportunity to make it an election issue as well. Ending poverty must be a priority for all members of the incoming government.

Read our full statement here

Read the response from the Green Party here

Read the response from the Liberal Party here

Read the response from the New Democrat Party here

New Report: Child Poverty by Federal Riding

In the lead up to the federal election, Campaign 2000 has mapped the prevalence of child poverty by federal riding from coast to coast to coast.  The interactive map, produced in partnership with the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives, and this corresponding report is the second update to the initial 2015 report.  Using the most recent data available, this interactive map shows the rate of child poverty by federal electoral district along with socio-economic indicators, allowing users to get a snapshot of state of child poverty by federal riding.  Readers can also view demographic characteristics that are associated with high poverty rates in each riding.

This update shows that while there is an important trend downwards in the rate of child poverty across the country since 2015, a significant number of children remain in poverty in every federal riding across Canada.  The latest data continue to paint a stark portrait of inequality with high- and low-income families living in close proximity while divided by wide social and economic gaps that leave too many children hungry, sick and stressed beyond what is expected or acceptable for children.

Federal ridings with the highest levels of child and family poverty are home to a higher proportion of Indigenous, racialized and immigrant community members and lone parent led families.  This correlation signals the persistence of discrimination and systemic inequalities that drive higher unemployment, lower labour market participation rates and higher proportions of renters and people spending more than 30% of their income on housing.

The presence of child and family poverty in every riding in Canada demands for it to be a priority issue for every party this election, with a commitment to strong and decisive federal action.  Clearly, every community, every candidate and all political parties have a stake in the eradication of poverty.

Read the press release and the Child poverty by federal riding: the work ahead for Canada’s next Parliament report. Click on the map below to see the rate of child poverty in your riding. Read the list of the best and worst ridings.

Talk to your local candidates about how they will work to end child and family poverty in your riding.  Read our letter to federal party leaders to see what we asked.
Read the Toronto Star exclusive: Report aims to put poverty on the agenda in federal election campaign

Child and Family Poverty priorities for Election 2019

As voters head to the polls this fall, Campaign 2000 wants to ensure that ending child and family poverty is responded to as a key issue by all parties.  Today our National Steering Committee sent an open letter to the leaders of each registered federal party leader on behalf of our 120+ partners.  We asked them a series of questions based on Campaign 2000’s recommendations that will give party leaders an opportunity to describe their party’s priority and approach to the issue of child and family poverty.  We will post all responses, including non responses, here so stay tuned.  Click here to read the letter.

Celebrate Equal Pay Day and Sign Childcare Petition Now

April 9, 2019 marks #EqualPayDay, the day when some women finally earn the same wage that men did in 2018. Yes, women in Canada still make roughly 30 per cent less than men. This pay gap is even larger for women from marginalized communities. 

The gender pay gap is a global phenomenon. Many women around the world are still waiting for their #EqualPayDay. Pay discrimination is a reality for women across all sectors, and all countries, and other forms of discrimination compound it.

Campaign 2000 is working with a number of national partners on a childcare for all campaign leading up to the October federal election, and our partners include Oxfam Canada, Childcare for All coalition, YWCA Canada and others.

Here are two actions you can take today!

1) Join us: Help raise awareness about #EqualPayDay by sharing the above information with your friends, family and other groups and by sharing this message on Facebook!

2) Did you know?  Lack of access to affordable child care keeps women out of the labour market. Affordable childcare for all would help close the gender pay gap and improve gender equality more broadly. Take action today to close the gender pay gap! Tell all federal parties to pledge support for a major investment in childcare. Send a message now!

Canada is in a childcare crisis, with the cost of childcare to families rising at three times the rate of inflation in some places.  Be a #ChildCareChampion by letting all federal parties know you want #AffordableChildCare for everyone. 

It’s time for all federal parties to support a childcare system that families across Canada can afford! Tell them today at: www.childcareforall.ca

Government Urged to Step Up Poverty Legislation in Open Letter

Campaign 2000 and partners at the Dignity for All Campaign have sent an open letter to Minister Jean-Yves Duclos with recommendations to strengthen Bill C-87, An Act respecting the reduction of poverty. This is in anticipation of the federal government’s legislation of Canada’s Poverty Reduction Strategy (CPRS).

Read our Media Release for more details.  To download a copy of the latest Open Letter, please visit: https://dignityforall.ca/open-letter-strengthen-canadas-poverty-reduction-bill/

Want to learn more about Canada’s first Poverty Reduction Act (PRA)?

Join the Webinar: Why Legislate? Making Canada’s Poverty Reduction Act Law

February 19 from 1:00– 2:00 pm EST, hosted by Canada without Poverty (CWP). 

We’ll answer questions like: What’s so important about the legislation attached to Canada’s first Poverty Reduction Strategy? What has the federal government proposed and how can it be strengthened? And what does this all mean for the rights of millions of people living in poverty?  We will also take questions from you and talk about how to support strong poverty reduction efforts.

Speakers include Laura Cattari (CWP board member) Darlene O’Leary (Citizens for Public Justice), Michele Biss (CWP) and Anita Khanna (Campaign 2000).

Space is limited, so register now to join the Webinar.

Sign the Open Letter: Strengthen Canada’s Poverty Reduction Bill

Campaign 2000 and partner Dignity for All are collecting signatures for an open letter in English and French that will be sent to Minister Jean-Yves Duclos in mid-February. The letter provides concrete recommendations to strengthen Bill C-87, An Act respecting the reduction of poverty. It also urges Canada to commit to ending poverty by 2030 to align with the United Nations’ first Sustainable Development Goal.

We urge all concerned individuals and organizations across Canada to read and sign this Open Letter.  Please visit the Dignity for All website for a list of recommendations and to read the full letter.

Our recommendations include aligning with, and explicitly referencing, Canada’s international human rights obligations; ensuring that Canada’s official poverty line genuinely reflects the experiences of poverty in Canada, especially as faced by those in marginalized groups; and ensuring that the National Advisory Council on Poverty provides an effective accountability mechanism for those living in poverty.

This legislation provides Canada the historic opportunity to be a global leader in human rights and to commit to a country free of poverty where every child and family thrives.

2018 Report Cards on Child and Family Poverty

In advance of the 30th year of the 1989 all-party commitment to eliminate child poverty by the year 2000, Campaign 2000 calls on the federal government to be more ambitious in its poverty reduction targets and timelines. The coalition commends the government on the first steps taken to reduce poverty but encourages bolder action to ensure Canadians do not have to wait another generation to see the end of child poverty.

Released on November 20th, National Child Day, 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.

Ahead of the 2019 federal election, Campaign 2000 invites all parties to commit to the missing piece in Canada’s anti-poverty agenda: universal childcare. Without affordable, accessible, and quality childcare, parents cannot lift themselves and their children out of poverty.

Six Campaign 2000 provincial partners are also releasing their annual report cards on child and family poverty today – all are calling for bold action against poverty. Click on the following links to read and download the new report cards and other materials as they become available:

National Report in  English and French

Media release in English and French

Infographics: report card overview, childcare and inequality

Ontario Child Poverty Infographics & Media Release, November 2018

Please click on the Media Release and five infographics listed below:

Ontario Campaign 2000 Media Release, Nov. 2018

Poverty Hurts Ontario

Income Security

Workers’ Rights

Universal Childcare

Affordable Housing

Reference List

Other provincial reports and support materials

Prince Edward Island Report Card, November 2018

New Brunswick Report Card, November 2018

Manitoba Report Card in 2018 (forthcoming in December)

Saskatchewan Report Card, November 2018

Alberta Report Card, November 2018

British Columbia Report Card, November 2018

 

C2000 to release 2018 Report Cards

Campaign 2000 will release its annual national Report Card on Child and Family Poverty on Tuesday, November 20 in Ottawa. The report marks 29 years since the unanimous House of Commons resolution to end child poverty in Canada by the year 2000, and nine years since the House voted “to develop an immediate plan to end poverty for all in Canada.

The national release will take place at the National Child Day Breakfast on the Hill for MPs and Senators hosted by the All Party Anti-Poverty Caucus. We are proud to co-present the event with our partners Child Care Now, Canadian Federation of University Women, OXFAM Canada and UNICEF Canada. The national report card release takes place simultaneously with provincial report card releases in British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba, New Brunswick, and Prince Edward Island. All report cards and related materials will be available at www.campaign2000.ca on November 20.

Marking Int’l Day for Eradication of Poverty

Campaign 2000 marks the International Day for the Eradication of Poverty on October 17, and we recall the federal government’s promise in 1989 to end child poverty by the year 2000. Canada has since reaffirmed this promise twice, but most recently released its Poverty Reduction Strategy that aims only to halve poverty by 2030.

These moving goalposts mean that today 1 in 5 children remain poverty, and by 2030–if the federal government reaches its target–hundreds of thousands of children will still be in poverty, 41 years after the original promise.

Canada must do more to eradicate child and family poverty. Our children have waited long enough. See our infographic to mark this special day.