In the fall of 1989, the House of Commons passed a resolution stating that “This House seeks to achieve the goal of eliminating poverty among Canadian children by the year 2000.” It is now 2009, more than two decades after the plan was proposed, and almost a decade after the 2000 deadline. However, this problem has only been getting worse. According to the 2008 National Report Card on Child and Family Poverty in Canada, one out of every eight children in the country are living in poverty. Child Poverty is in the double digits in all provinces except Alberta, Quebec, and Prince Edward Island. In 2007, 345 000 kids in Ontario alone were living in poverty. Canada has a child poverty rate of 15 percent, this is triple the amount of other first-world countries such as Norway, Finland and Sweden. Over the past two decades, our economic status has improved, but this situation has been getting worse.
Often, we don’t realize how privileged we are, and forget those living among us who are much less fortunate. Five million Canadians are living in poverty and there is an increasing amount of youth, young families, workers and Aboriginals in this demographic. A 2008 study by Statistics Canada shows that half of all Aboriginal children live in low income families. Additionally, children with disabilities or recent immigrants and lone-parent families face a greater chance of growing up poor. Moreover, the Canadian Association of Food Banks ...
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...post-secondary education. If they don’t go to university or college, they will most likely get a lower wage when they start working. Every child should have the same access to a better education. Right now, tuition fees are increasing in 6 provinces. Financial aid should have a priority list, of people from low-income families.
Finally, we need to put more of an emphasis on this problem. We already have the public’s support, and with some effort from the political parties, we can definitely improve this situation. We are not saying that our party can change everything by ourselves, but if we are elected, we will work with other parties to try to solve this situation. This is something we can overcome as a country. Like NDP MP, Olivia Chow (Trinity-Spadina) said, ““We have to decide as a country which comes first – corporate tax cuts or defeating child poverty.”
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