Consultation Report on Poverty Reduction Strategy released
Canada is one step closer to having a Canadian Poverty Reduction Strategy following the release of What We Heard (WWH). The strategy will be unveiled later this year.
WWH summarizes feedback from a wide range of consultations held in 2017. Many United Way Centraides (UWCs) played an important role in those consultations by animating ‘Community Conversations’ with local stakeholders, particularly people with lived experience, and encouraging participation in the government’s process.
Who did we hear from and how?
It is encouraging that the WWH reflects many of the same themes and challenges UWCs heard during their Community Conversations. These include:
- Too many Canadians struggle to afford the necessities of life—food and housing.
- Poverty and its associated stresses exact a heavy toll on people’s physical and mental health.
- Some groups—woman, children, people with disabilities, victims of domestic violence, and people from racialized communities—face disproportionate barriers related to social exclusion that limit opportunity and trap many in poverty.
- The scars resulting from residential schools and colonialism profoundly impact Indigenous Peoples of Canada and relegate many to lives of poverty.
- Changes to workplaces and the labour market are increasing, causing job precariat and financial instability for many Canadians.