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Rich-poor gap is making Canadians sick

Tuesday, July 17th, 2012

July 15, 2012
The top determinants of health in order are income status, education, social support networks, employment and working conditions, early childhood development, physical environment, personal health practices and coping skills and biological and genetic factors. Access to health care is ninth as a determinant of health… By tackling each of the social determinants of health with intelligent public policy informed by evidence-based best practices, our governments will knock down Canada’s unconscionable poverty rates…

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Posted in Equality Debates, Health Debates | No Comments »

Happy Tax Benefits Day! A reply to the Fraser Institute

Tuesday, June 7th, 2011

June 7, 2011
Decades of anti-tax rhetoric – the cries for “tax relief” from the “tax burden” – have undermined public appreciation of sufficient and fair taxation. And yet there is evidence that nations in which citizens are prepared to support a deeper public pool of revenue are economically more competitive and have a higher quality of life, with lesser poverty and wealth inequality, than lower-tax nations… the most important may be to “strive to bring about a change in social attitudes toward taxation and its essential role in a democracy.” Hence the inauguration of Tax Benefits Day

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… the looming threat of potentially massive cuts to the Canada Health and Social transfers

Tuesday, February 1st, 2011

February 1, 2011
A rapidly emerging issue of immense public interest is the future of the Canada Health and Canada Social transfers. Critical decisions are coming about these transfers that could greatly shape the health and social security of Canadians in the coming years – and thus the very fabric of Canada… In a remarkable open letter on January 25 to federal Finance Minister, Jim Flaherty, former senior Department of Finance officials Scott Clark and Peter Devries lay out the stark implications of this issue.

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Posted in Governance Debates | 1 Comment »

Major new federal report on poverty released today in the House of Commons

Wednesday, November 17th, 2010

November 17, 2010
Today, in the House of Commons, The Standing Committee on Human Resources, Skills and Social Development and the Status of Persons with Disabilities (the HUMA Committee) released its final report on the federal role in addressing poverty… We encourage all other interested parties to comment… The government has 120 days to respond formally to these recommendations.

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The homelessness and housing crisis in Canada

Sunday, November 14th, 2010

November 13, 2010
“Canada is inching closer to a long overdue and much-needed national affordable housing plan. Bill C-304, draft legislation to create a national plan that was proposed by Libby Davies, MP for Vancouver East, is back for the second round of debate on third reading on Nov. 18. Then the Commons is scheduled to vote on Nov. 24. The Wellesley Institute’s Precarious Housing in Canada 2010 sets out the need, and the framework, for a national housing plan… Advocates hope that the bill will get third and final reading vote before the House rises for the holidays on Dec. 17.”

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Retirement Security for Everyone Campaign

Friday, September 3rd, 2010

Sep 2nd, 2010
The Canadian Labour Congress (“the umbrella organization for dozens of affiliated Canadian and international unions, as well as provincial federations of labour and regional labour councils”) has excellent, accessible information in support of labour’s Retirement Security for Everyone campaign… Under international human rights law to which Canada is signatory, everyone has the right to “social security” and an “adequate standard of living.

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The Right to Housing: The Red Tent Campaign and Bill C-304

Saturday, July 17th, 2010

July 14, 2010
Inspired by a similar and successful effort in France, and initiated by the innovative, Vancouver-based Pivot Legal Society and allied organizations, the Red Tent Campaign uses visually striking tents to draw public attention to homelessness and the need for a pan-Canadian housing strategy – rooted in Canada’s legal obligation under the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights to honor the right to housing.

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The Rise and Fall of Economic and Social Rights. What’s Next?

Monday, July 12th, 2010

July 12, 2010
He’s watched Canada move from a “sharing and caring” society to the “new barbarism.” Now Ed Broadbent comes out swinging. In this article based on his address to the Congress of the Canadian Federation for the Humanities and Social Sciences on May 29th, the former leader of the NDP summarizes the journey of generations and issues a challenge to today’s leaders: stop ignoring the threat of rising inequality, tackle poverty, and show Canadians your progress.

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Reflections on poverty and family, from Canadian writer Lorna Crozier

Tuesday, June 29th, 2010

June 28, 2010
Celebrated, award-winning Canadian poet and writer, Lorna Crozier[‘s]… memoir…Small Beneath the Sky, published in 2009… allows the reader, through a beautifully written narrative, to explore issues of poverty in a working family… “Too easily the working poor are invisible. Growing up with parents who could barely pay for the rent of a derelict house had its effects on me… most of my life I’ve carried the shame of not being as good as many other people in my small town. It’s taken me many years to shed that sense of shame.”

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Founding of the CWP Advocacy Network

Tuesday, May 25th, 2010

May 25, 2010
“We have founded the CWP Advocacy Network so as to strengthen the call for progressive social policy in Canada,” says Geraldine King, President of Canada Without Poverty. “Canadian charities are considerably restricted by the Income Tax Act and Canada Revenue Agency policy in the amount of advocacy they can do, or what the CRA terms ‘political activity.’ But the reality is, to effectively address poverty in Canada requires substantial policy and legislative change. That in turn requires an active, vigorous voice on policy and legislation from civil society.

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Posted in Inclusion Debates | 1 Comment »

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