Basic-Income Program – Ontario, CA

4,000 Canadian families will soon get paid by Ontario for doing nothing, By Alan Freeman, April 27, 2017, Washington Post: “The government of Ontario, Canada’s most populous province, is joining the basic-income bandwagon with the launch of a three-year pilot program that will test how paying people an unconditional basic wage works in practice…”

Poverty and the Child Protection System – Ontario, CA

Report shines light on poverty’s role on kids in CAS system, By Sandro Contenta and Jim Rankin, August 15, 2016, Toronto Star: “A new report that for the first time calculates the effect of poverty in Ontario child protection has found it plays a significant role in kids being taken from their families and placed into care.  Children whose families ran out of money for housing were twice as likely to be placed with foster parents or group homes, according to an analysis of Ontario children taken into care in 2013.  Similar rates were found for families who ran out of money for food or for utilities. Children with a parent suffering from addiction or mental health problems were also placed in care at about twice the overall rate…”

Single Adults in Poverty – Ontario, CA

Ontario’s soaring poverty gap ‘starkest’ for single adults as welfare rates stagnate, By Laurie Monsebraaten, May 9, 2016, Toronto Star: “After five years on welfare, Pauline Bryant figures she was probably over-qualified to help others ‘get by on next to nothing’ as a part-time community engagement worker last year. Although the job gave Bryant an extra $600 a month, it didn’t provide medical benefits or enough money to escape welfare. But it eased her sense of isolation…”

Youth Homelessness

Poverty the leading cause of youth homelessness: Study, By Laurie Monsebraaten, April 4, 2016, Toronto Star: “Poverty — not delinquency — is the leading cause of youth homelessness around the world, according to a groundbreaking international study led by a University of Toronto researcher.  The study, published online Monday by JAMA Pediatrics, analyzes research on youth homelessness involving more than 13,500 young people in 24 countries, including Canada and the United States and is believed to be the first of its kind…”

Food Insecurity – Ontario, CA

400,000 rely on food banks each month in Ontario, By Laurie Monsebraaten, March 22, 2011, Toronto Star: “Hunger is a daily reality for Mike Crawford, 56, as he treks across downtown Toronto in search of soup kitchens between monthly visits to a local food bank. Crawford, who tumbled onto welfare after a nervous breakdown a decade ago, is among more than 400,000 Ontarians – or 3 per cent of the province’s population – who are forced to turn to food banks every month, according to a new report by the Ontario Association of Food Banks. Food bank use has grown by an unprecedented 28 per cent since the recession in 2008, making Ontario the third highest user of food bank services in Canada behind Newfoundland and Manitoba, says the report released Tuesday…”

Special Diet Allowance Food Assistance Program – Ontario, CA

Poverty advocates decry loss of diet allowance, By Laurie Monsebraaten, March 25, 2010, Toronto Star: “Ontario is scrapping the Special Diet Allowance that helps people on social assistance pay extra food costs related to specific medical conditions such as diabetes and high blood pressure. Confirming the pre-budget fears of anti-poverty advocates, the Liberal government cited last fall’s provincial auditor’s report, which found evidence of abuse in the welfare-based program. Instead, the budget is proposing a new nutritional supplement to be administered by the health ministry. The allowance program that provides up to $250 per month and helps about one in five people on social assistance ‘is not sustainable and is not achieving the intended results,’ budget documents say…”