‘Intensely urban’ central Toronto has the highest child poverty rate of any federal riding in Ontario

Toronto Center has the highest child poverty rate of any federal riding in Ontario, according to a new report.

The report, “Poverty in the Midst of Plenty,” from the Canadian Center for Policy Alternatives, indicates that Toronto Center is an “urban intense” riding of over 100,000 people. The report, released Wednesday, was written for Campaign 2000, a national coalition of 120 groups that advocate for children and families.

A total of 3,880 children lived in poverty in Toronto Center in 2019, according to the report.

According to the report, the population of Toronto Center is younger than the Ontario average. He says 50 percent of people are racialized and 40 percent are immigrants. Twenty-nine percent of its households are homeowners. Its residents are likely to be employed, but 34.6% of all children there were considered low income in 2019.

“Make no mistake, there is money in this country, and the lion’s share is right here in Ontario. But not everyone gets their fair share, ”the report said.

Kenora, a riding in northwestern Ontario, has the second highest child poverty rate in the province, according to the report. In this riding, 6,150 children lived in poverty in 2019, or 33.5% of all children in this riding. The report states that 47% of Kenora’s population is Aboriginal.

“The contrast between these two places – the hyper-urban and the vast north – demonstrates how pervasive child poverty is in this province,” the report said.

Overall, the report found that approximately 500,000 children in Ontario, or 17.6% of all children, lived in poverty in 2019. This compares to 1.3 million children living in poverty. in Canada.

“Some of these children live in cities, others in the suburbs, others in small towns and rural areas. Some are racialized, some are Aboriginal, some are white, but one thing is true for all of them: On a very basic level, they lack Ontario, ”the report says.

Child poverty rates fell between 2013 and 2019

Leila Sarangi, national director of Campaign 2000, says poverty has a daily impact on children and families.

“Parents skip meals so kids can eat, don’t pay for medicine because they have to pay rent – those kinds of daily decisions are really the real impact,” Sarangi said.

Data shows that the child poverty rate in Ontario fell from 23.4% of all children in 2013 to 17.6% in 2019, mainly due to a strong labor market and increasing transfers government to families. These transfers include the Canada Child Benefit, which was introduced by the federal government in 2016.

But even so, the report says “continued policy interventions” are needed to eradicate the problem of child poverty in Ontario.

Shalini Konanur, executive director and lawyer for the South Asian Legal Clinic of Ontario, said racialized and Indigenous communities suffer from poor health, lower education and fewer employment opportunities.

“Canada must consider a child poverty reduction strategy that specifically addresses the needs of these vulnerable groups,” she said.

In a press release on Wednesday, Randy Robinson, Ontario director of the Canadian Center for Policy Alternatives, said child poverty is taking a heavy toll.

“In a province as rich as Ontario, in a country as rich as Canada, we have no more excuses to end poverty,” he said.

“If we’ve learned anything from the COVID-19 pandemic, it’s that if governments dare to use the tools at their disposal, they can do great things. “

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