Therefore, poverty is a very important issue for all Canadians.
Put Food in the Budget is urging Canadians in Ontario, Canada, to help get poor people’s issues on the agenda in this election and beyond.
While politicians run for re-election, people are still walking to food banks …
“Leaders of Ontario’s major political parties are not talking about poverty during the election campaign, nor are they discussing meaningful increases to social assistance rates. What are they talking about?
Premier Kathleen Wynne’s proposed budget included just $30 a month more for people receiving Ontario Works benefits. That would raise the rate to $650 a month, still completely inadequate.
Tim Hudak has proposed a lifetime limit on Ontario Works payments a person could receive.
Andrea Horwath has made no comment on poverty or social assistance.
Our campaign to increase social assistance rates to levels that enable lives of health and dignity will therefore have to continue after the provincial election. We will need to continue working together to pressure whoever wins on June 12 to put food in the budget.
We’ve designed a poster for this election that you can download here. It illustrates how the leaders are focused on their own self-interest, ignoring Ontario residents who are poor and – among other indignities – must go to food banks.
We suggest printing the poster and doing the following:
Put the poster up in public in your community.
Plaster the poster to the windows and doors of local candidates’ campaign offices.
Print information about poverty and food banks in your community on the poster’s reverse side, and hand it out at all-candidates meetings.
At community all-candidates meetings, ask the candidates from all parties “How much money per month do you think a single person on social assistance needs to live a life of health and dignity – and what is your party’s position on raising social assistance to that level?”
In the following letter, Anita Khanna – Coordinator, Social Reform/Ontario Campaign 2000 – is asking Canadians living in low income or working with families in low income to send input as quotes or statements to firstname.lastname@example.org by November 12, 2013.
“Today, nearly 1 in 7 children in Ontario continue to live in poverty with their families.
The next PRS should continue efforts towards reducing poverty among children and families and expand its framework to reduce overall poverty in the province – including among children and families – by 50% before the end of 2018.
Ontario should eradicate deep poverty in the province by 2018 and implement targeted programs to address the disturbing trend of women, Indigenous and racialized people, people with disabilities and newcomers being more vulnerable to poverty than others in the province.”
The majority of Ontario children receiving social assistance benefits (67%) are in lone-mother led families
The provincial child poverty rate is 12.6%, or 345,000 children (using 2005 Statistics Canada data on tax income)
That is, one of every eight children in Ontario is living in poverty
The rate declined slightly from 2004 to 2005, but has been on an upward trend since 2001
Ontario’s child poverty rate is the fourth highest in Canada – 44% of all low-income children in Canada live in Ontario
Poverty rates for children in Aboriginal, racialized, new immigrant and lone mother-led families are at least double the provincial rate
In 2007, a single mother with one young child on social assistance had a family income that was at least $5,357 below the poverty line
Full-time, full-year work at Ontario’s new minimum wage of $10.25 an hour generates earnings that are approximately $3,000 below the poverty line
70% of all low-income children in Ontario live in families where at least one parent is working part-time or full-time, yet the families are unable to earn enough to lift family income above the poverty line
Parents who are unable to be in the workforce and rely on social assistance struggle on welfare benefits that are as low now as they were in 1967
Average CEO salary has grown from 25 times the average Canadian income in 1980 to 250 times the average income in 2011
In 2009, Ontario spent $64 per person on affordable housing compared to the average among all provinces of $115 per person
This video presents “John Clarke of OCAP Speech in Sudbury.mov”:
The Ontario Coalition Against Poverty (OCAP) in Canada is calling for a week of action from December 7 – December 14, 2012 to put pressure on Liberal MPPs throughout the Province to reverse the decision to eliminate the Community Start-Up and Maintenance Benefit (CSUMB)
Published on Nov 22, 2012
A discussion on the implications of the cut to the Community Start-Up and Maintenance Benefit along with further plans by the coalition against poverty to fight the cut
“In its 2012 budget, the Ontario government announced that it was eliminating the Community Start-Up and Maintenance Benefit (CSUMB) as of January 1, 2013
As of January 1, 2013, the CSUMB will end and 50 percent of its funding ($67 million in 2013-20142) will be passed to municipalities as part of the Community Homelessness Prevention Initiative (CHPI), the first phase of a multi-year consolidation of housing programs
Municipalities will determine how their provincial funds will be spent, but will not be required to produce housing and homelessness plans until 2014, a full year after taking responsibility for CHPI that was created in July 2012 by the Ministry of Municipal Affairs and Housing under the province’s Long-Term Affordable Housing Strategy
The Ministry will eventually consolidate twenty housing and homelessness programs currently administered in different ministries
Supports provided with CHPI funding will be available to all low income Ontarians, including but not limited to those on social assistance3
It is not yet known how municipalities will decide to run their local housing and homelessness programs
As part of the Long-Term Affordable Housing Strategy, municipalities must produce local housing and homelessness plans in order to address housing needs in their communities, but these plans are not required until 2014
The province has not set any requirement for municipalities to deliver programs that cover the expenses that were eligible for the CSUMB, nor have they made public the terms under which municipalities will deliver consolidated homelessness prevention programs
The recently updated 2012 Budget outlined the government’s plan to eliminate the deficit, and balance the budget by 2017-18 as follows:
Additional revenue from:
A temporary new Deficit-Fighting High-Income Tax Bracket for individuals earning more than $500,000 annually:
income tax rate on taxable incomes over $500,000 will increase by two percentage points (i.e. two per cent point surtax), from 11.16 per cent to 13.16 per cent
this change would generate additional revenue of:
$280 million in 2012-13
$470 million in 2013-14
and $495 million in 2014-15.
All of the additional revenue raised by this proposed measure would be used to reduce the Provincial deficit and accelerate Ontario’s plan to eliminate the deficit by 2017-18.
The new tax bracket would be eliminated once the budget is balanced by 2017-18.
and by not increasing overall spending
the Province’s deficits are now projected to be lower than the 2012 Budget each year between 2011-12 and 2016-17.
McGuinty Government aims to accelerate Ontario’s fiscal plan to balance the 2012 Budget in order to eliminate the deficit even faster by 2017-18 via the proposed measures above as well as redirect proposed new savings (from other measures) to support important social priorities with no net new provincial spending, which include: