In 2019, the Cities Reducing Poverty network grew to 80 cities and communities across Canada and the USA, all committed to local poverty reduction efforts. Even more heartening is to see that this expanding movement is having an impact – we are seeing population-level changes in poverty rates and food security at national, regional and local levels. Coupled with several positive policy announcements, these trends indicate that despite the stubborn nature of poverty, we are moving in the right direction.
Enjoy the top 10 news stories and popular learning resources from 2019.
What We Are Talking About: Popular News Stories in 2019
- The Federal Government announces poverty has been reduced by 825,000 people from 2015-2017 and the overall poverty rate has dropped below 10% for the first time in Canadian history. Related: James Hughes, Executive Lead of Government and Partner Relations at the McConnell Foundation, proposes two defensive and three offensive strategies aimed at closing the gap for the remaining people living in poverty, at the annual Gathering of Cities Reducing Poverty members.
- Alberta announces a 50% reduction in child poverty from 10% to 5%, largely due to expanded federal and provincial Child Benefits. Related: Read the Case Study detailing the policies that have contributed to Alberta’s decline in poverty and the importance of governments, cities and communities aligning policies and programs locally to amplify their impact.
- Hamilton, Ontario announces a 24% reduction in local poverty over the last 10 years, indicating that comprehensive, multi-sectoral poverty reduction initiatives are effective.
- Severe food insecurity has been reduced by 1/3 in Canada, since the inception of the Canada Child Benefit, says a new study from the University of Toronto.
- Statistics Canada shares results of consultations as the Federal Government updates the Market Basket Measure (Canada’s official poverty line). Related: explore 10 Things to Know About Poverty Measurement in Canada
- The first Food Policy for Canada is released as a road map to a healthier and more sustainable food system for Canada. See how communities, such as the Bruce Grey Poverty Taskforce, are moving beyond charity and transforming local food systems.
- The Government of B.C. releases their provincial poverty reduction plan and announces a $5M grant to support cities to create and implement poverty reduction plans locally.
- The Saskatoon Poverty Reduction Partnership launches a poverty elimination strategy focused on 12 bold ideas and employing an equity and human-rights based approach.
- There are renewed calls for accessible universal health care during the Federal Election as an Angus Reid Institute report reveals access to health care is a significant barrier to 1 in 5 people who are 55 years or older, and that 1 in 6 struggle to afford the cost of prescription drugs.
- Cities and communities across Canada share examples of activities they have organized to inspire others to raise awareness on October 17th, the International Day for the Eradication of Poverty.
What We Are Learning: Popular CRP Resources in 2019
Ever wonder what resources are proving most useful to poverty reduction collaboratives? Below, we have summed up the top reads and shared resources this past year. Consider whether one or two of these short publications may be helpful in your work too.
- Book | 10 - Engaging People with Lived/Living Experience
- Guide | Foundation for Building a Common Agenda
- Case Study | Authentic Engagement: A Learning Journey
- Webinar | Collective Impact Through the Lens of ABCD and RBA
- Case Study | Alberta Proves That Yes! We Can Reduce Poverty
- Paper | Sustainable Livelihoods
- Guide | How to Develop a Common Agenda for a Collective Impact
- Tool | Developing Poverty Reduction Timelines
- Compendium | A Collection of Poverty Reduction Strategies
- Article | Cities and the Federal Poverty Reduction Strategy
Take Your Learning Further
SUMMIT | The End of Poverty - Governments, groups and individuals across Canada and the US will come together in a monumental way from October 14-16, 2020 in Calgary, Alberta. Learn, share, and be inspired by the national network of cities and communities reducing poverty locally. Join us there – Sign up to receive event information.