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Home-care crunch coming

Sunday, October 21st, 2012

… the community care system is drastically underfunded. The supply of services needs to increase in order to meet current and future demand. Improved wages and working conditions must improve to help attract and retain good people. Canada should explore new forms of financing, such as social insurance for long-term care, possible tax-assisted savings plans or a new type of social financing mechanism.

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Posted in Child & Family Delivery System | No Comments »

Saving Welfare Incomes and Poverty Profile

Friday, June 29th, 2012

June 29, 2012
Information is under attack in Ottawa… Social Security Statistics: Canada and Provinces, a treasure trove of information on federal, provincial/territorial and municipal government programs, has simply disappeared. In June 2012, Ottawa jettisoned the Survey of Labour and Income Dynamics (SLID) which gathered priceless information on changes experienced by individuals over time, such as movement in and out of poverty… The Caledon Institute of Social Policy will take over the task of gathering and analyzing the welfare and low income data… This vital information will form the first elements of a new Caledon product, the Canada Social Report.

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65 Shades of Grey [health care costs]

Tuesday, June 5th, 2012

June 5, 2012
Population aging has fuelled fears of skyrocketing health care costs… But often missing from the conversations are the factors that can have the biggest impact on health care spending because they have the largest impact on health. The most profound levers for change include reduced poverty, active living and home care. Paying attention to these factors will lead to more significant health care reform than any of the discussions that keep focusing solely on the existing system.

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Posted in Health Policy Context | 4 Comments »

Do No Harm [OAS]

Tuesday, June 5th, 2012

June 04, 2012
The 2012 federal Budget’s announcement that the age of eligibility for Old Age Security will be increased from 65 to 67 violates the first principle of social policy. Low-income seniors will be hurt, not helped, by this decision. Worse still, poor seniors will be hit harder than the better-off… This move will reduce income overall for low-income Canadians aged 65 and 66 and, as a result, raise their poverty rate… Caledon has proposed a fix: provide an income-tested benefit for low-income seniors ages 65 and 66, to shield them from the age raise.

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Old Age Insecurity?

Monday, February 27th, 2012

Feb.27, 2012
Low-income seniors will be hardest hit by increasing the age of entitlement for Old Age Security, since they rely on that program for most of their income and they have a lower lifespan than middle- and upper-income Canadians. If the federal government goes ahead with that ill-considered change, then at least it should provide an income benefit to poor seniors aged 65 and 66 so that they do not have to keep working or remain on welfare for two more years.

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Caledon Submission… on National Finance [Tax Credits]

Tuesday, December 13th, 2011

Dec. 12, 2011
We were pleased to see recognition of caregiver needs in Bill C-13. But we do not support the design of the new measure, which will deny assistance to lower-income families and provide tax assistance to non-poor families, including the well-off. Similarly, the Children’s Arts Tax Credit, while important acknowledgement of the value of arts and cultural activities, will do nothing for lower-income families but will help the rest, including the relatively well-off. We also raise general concerns regarding tax expenditures as a means of financing social needs.

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Posted in Child & Family Debates | No Comments »

Inequality Is Not Inevitable

Thursday, December 8th, 2011

Dec. 8, 2011
The paper… considers the many economic and social factors that contribute to high poverty and rising inequality… Poverty and inequality are complex problems that require a set of linked interventions related to affordable housing, early childhood development and child care, education and skills training, and decent employment opportunities that pay a living wage. This paper focuses, however, upon the crucial redistributive role of the federal government through income security programs and a progressive income tax system.

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Fixing the Hole in E. I.

Wednesday, December 7th, 2011

Dec, 6, 2011
Many unemployed Canadians are ineligible for Employment Insurance, so that welfare becomes their only alternative… applicants must exhaust their financial assets, and the paternalistic requirements of welfare are stigmatizing. As a consequence, it is difficult to bounce back from welfare into the economic mainstream… Something is needed between Employment Insurance, with its relatively higher benefits but limited reach, and welfare, to which anyone in need can apply but only for inadequate benefits.

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Trends in Canada’s Payroll Taxes

Wednesday, November 30th, 2011

Nov. 29, 2011
Over the years, EI premiums have declined considerably overall, while CPP contributions have risen. However, the combined amount of payroll taxes has risen only modestly, mainly in the first half of the 1990s. And since 2002, maximum combined payroll taxes have remained roughly level at around $2,900 in gross terms and $2,500 in net (after federal tax credit) terms. Canada’s payroll taxes are low by international standards.

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Restoring Minimum Wages in Canada

Wednesday, April 6th, 2011

April 05, 2011
The report argues that the provincial and territorial governments should – in conjunction with key actors including business, labour, experts and social groups – work together through a transparent process to define what constitutes an adequate minimum wage (e.g., equal to the poverty line, or a percentage of average earnings) and how to protect its value over time through some form of indexation (e.g., to the cost of living, or to the change in average earnings). The report also compares minimum wages… Ontario ranks third-highest in the US and Canada, next to Oregon and Washington .

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