Can Kathleen Wynne change the conversation on poverty?

Friday, July 18, 2014

These are tough times in Ontario.

Once an economic giant, Ontario now has one of the largest debt-loads of any sub-national government in the world. And on a day-to-day basis for many, Ontario is a province in crisis. Forty per cent of those who suffer food insecurity  in Canada live in Ontario. A job in the province no longer protects against poverty – a full 10% of those using food banks are gainfully employed. Immigrants, newcomers and other vulnerable groups are over-represented in precarious employment, often working multiple part-time jobs and still not earning enough to make ends meet. Social assistance recipients are living at least 40 percent below any accepted poverty line, and thousands of people, including many youth, are homeless, living in shelters or on the streets.

These are not the living conditions we expect in one of the most advanced democracies and one of the richest countries in the world. So what is a premier to do?

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