“How many more children are going to be left behind before we will make it our collective priority to end child poverty,” JoAnna LaTulippe-Rochon asks in a presentation on child poverty in Cape Breton. She speaks of parents living in rat-infested homes, skipping meals in order to feed their children.
“Being poor was like a fulltime job, and going through it, I realized how inaccessible the whole process was, and I had this burning desire to make it easier for others.” Meet Laura Fisher, on social assistance not that long ago, and now a master’s student at Acadia.
A new booklet recently issued by Statistics Canada highlights the huge economic gap between Black people and the general population in terms of employment, income and child poverty. The situation is bad in Canada, and compared to other large cities the situation is especially bad in Halifax.
More people will qualify for the NS Child Benefit program, and that’s a good thing. But there is nothing in the provincial budget to improve the lives of people on income assistance and their kids.
Since 1989 child poverty in Nova Scotia decreased by less than one percent. One in four kids lives in poverty, for kids younger than 2 years, that is one in three! Let that sink in. And numbers for African Nova Scotian and Mi’kmaw kids are much higher again.
Media release: “When a child is hungry; when they aren’t sure where home will be at the end of the day; when they don’t have adequate clothing; it’s very hard for them to focus on learning,” says Wozney. “The evidence is clear that on average, children living in poverty experience worse academic outcomes and are twice as likely to drop out of school. They also have a much higher chance of developing a mental health issue.”
A letter from a substitute teacher somewhere in rural Nova Scotia. “A hungry stomach accentuates resentment and a sense of frustration; why worry about equations when your stomach is grumbling or you can feel the wind tug on your sweater, climb down your spine with every breeze?”
Nova Scotia leads the country in the shameful categories of share of the population living in poverty and share of children living in poverty. In fact, child poverty increased in Nova Scotia in 2017. Canada-wide however, poverty stats declined substantially. What’s going on?
A recently published report shows that incomes for people on welfare in Nova Scotia are terribly insufficient, and on a downward trajectory. They are also by and large the lowest in Canada.
Media release: The Nova Scotia College of Social Workers (NSCSW) is advocating for the creation of a Child and Youth Advocate office to protect and promote the rights of Nova Scotia children and youth with their campaign launched today called Child Youth Advocate NS.