Poverty, inequality & welfare

Charity doesn’t buy a lot of shoes

OK, this is just a little crass, but the calculation begs to be done. It apppears rather than buying himself a new pair of shoes for the Budget Speech, the Finance Minister has donated $4,000 to the Salvation Army to buy 100 pairs of running shoes for poor children. A generous gesture. But if he… View Article

End Poverty. It’s Not a Game.

Feb 12, 2009
That’s the catchy slogan for the Poverty Olympics, which took place in Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside on Sunday. The event mixed fun and games with a serious message about our province’s failure to adequately tackle poverty and homelessness while we spend spend spend getting ready for the 2010 Olympics (more in this Wall Street Journal article…or… View Article

Children’s mental health: Are we paying attention?

Feb 11, 2009
According to the Ministry of Children and Family Development (MCFD), 15% or about 1 in 7 children in BC suffer from a mental health problem serious enough to cause significant distress and impair their development and functioning.   In children, mental illness supersedes all other health problems in terms of the numbers affected and the degreee of impairment.  Think about… View Article

Low income leads to poorer mental health

Feb 2, 2009
Statistics Canada recently published an interesting study on the relationship between low income and poor mental health. The paper, titled “Income and Psychological Distress: the Role of the Social Environment,” provides yet another reason for us to invest in a bold poverty-reduction plan. A large body of research has focused on the poorer physical health… View Article

Poverty reduction plan: can we afford it?

Jan 26, 2009
Perhaps the more appropriate question is: can we afford not to have one? Public policy is always about choices, and there is no excuse for poverty in a society as wealthy as ours. Consider this: the total cost of getting everyone in British Columbia currently below the poverty line (the after-tax Low Income Cut Off)… View Article