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Canadian Social Research Newsletter
March 8, 2009

Welcome to the weekly Canadian Social Research Newsletter,
a listing of the new links added to the Canadian Social Research Links website in the past week.

The e-mail version of this week's issue of the newsletter is going out to 1989 subscribers.

Scroll to the bottom of this newsletter to see some notes and a disclaimer.

IN THIS ISSUE:

Canadian content

1. Canadian Social Forum (Calgary, May 19-22, 2009) - Forum program updated to March 4
2.
BC auditor confirms that province's homeless programs "not successful" (Office of the Auditor General of British Columbia) - March 6
3. Public pension consultations, March/April 2009 : Is this the beginning of the end of the "Cadillac" (indexed) pension for federal civil servants?
4. Ontario : Put Food in the Budget, says the Association of Local Public Health Agencies (Wellesley Institute) - March 3
5. International Women's Day (March 8)
6. Ontario needs to step up and tackle social deficit (The Toronto Star) - March 4
7. Where’s Home? A Picture of Housing Needs in Ontario, 2008 (Ontario Non-Profit Housing Association & Co-operative Housing Federation of Canada) - March 3
8.
What's New in The Daily (Statistics Canada):
--- Earnings differences between immigrants and the Canadian-born – The role of literacy skills - March 4
--- Self-reported delinquency of immigrant youth, Toronto 2006 - March 4
--- Foreign control in the Canadian economy, 2006 - March 4
--- Canadian economic accounts, fourth quarter 2008 and December 2008 - March 2
--- Financial flow accounts, fourth quarter 2008 - March 2
9. What's new from the Childcare Resource and Research Unit (Toronto) - March 4

International  content

10. Poverty Dispatch: U.S. media coverage of social issues and programs (Institute for Research on Poverty - University of Wisconsin-Madison)
11. One in 31 U.S. Adults are Behind Bars, on Parole or Probation (Pew Center on the States) - March 2
12. [U.S.] Annual Update of the Health and Human Services Poverty Guidelines for 2009 (Department of Health and Human Services) - January 23
13.
Remembering Mollie Orshansky—The Developer of the [U.S.] Poverty Thresholds (Social Security Online) - December 2008
14. Reports from the United Nations Human Rights Council (10th Session of the UN Human Rights Council - March 2-27, 2009) - March 5
15. Australian Policy Online Weekly Briefing - selected recent content
16. CRINMAIL (March 2009) - (Child Rights Information Network - CRIN)

Have a great week!

Gilles

************************
Gilles Séguin

Canadian Social Research Links
http://www.canadiansocialresearch.net


E-mail:
gilseg@rogers.com


1. Canadian Social Forum (Calgary, May 19-22, 2009) - Updated Program

From the Canadian Council on Social Development:

Canadian Social Forum
(Calgary, May 19-22, 2009)
The Canadian Council on Social Development (CCSD) invites you to the first Canadian Social Forum, which will take place in Calgary, May 19-22, 2009. We're bringing together a dynamic combination of unusual suspects from social development, public health, environment, community safety and recreation to brainstorm about poverty.

Preliminary Program - UPDATED TO MARCH 4, 2009
HTML version
PDF version
(114K, 9 pages)
- incl. links to : * Preliminary Program * Speakers' Bios * Advisory Committee * Registration Information * Accommodations * Calgary * Abstracts * more...

Subscribe to CCSD Newsflash
Add your email address to our mailing list (box on the left-had side of the page) to be notified of updates.

Speakers/moderators include (so far):
* Richard Harwood * Sheila Watt-Cloutier * Charles Karelis * Alain Noël * Cornelia Wieman * Alain Noël * Richard Shillington * Michael Creek * Ruth MacDonald * Shirley Soleil * Steve Snyder * Roger Gibbins * Christine Walsh * Michael Prince * Yvonne Peters * Deborah Parkes * Lucie Dumais * Laurie Beachell * Cam Crawford * Michael Bach * Bruce Porter * Lois Klassen * Cindy Blackstock * Uzma Shakir * Tim Draimin * Michel Venne * Tim Draimin * Michel Venne * Mike McCracken * Jim Mulvale * Jacquie Maund * Laurel Rothman * Adrienne Montani * Ian Renaud–Lauze * Hugh Segal * Françoise David * Mark Kelley * James Hughes * Seth Klein * Derek Cook * Linda Hawke * Lois Klassen * more...

Registration info
NOTE : the early bird registration rate is in effect until April 2, 2009.

Source:
Canadian Council on Social Development

- Go to the Conferences and Events Links page: http://www.canadiansocialresearch.net/confer.htm
- Go to the Social Research Organizations (I) in Canada page: http://www.canadiansocialresearch.net/research.htm

2. BC auditor confirms that province's homeless programs "not successful" - March 6
(Office of the Auditor General of British Columbia)

Homelessness : Clear Focus Needed (PDF - 3MB, 44 pages)
March 2009
"(...) Given the complexity of the issue, reducing and preventing homelessness requires all levels of government to form a clear focus, a long-term commitment, and a coordinated effort.(...) We recommend that government develop a comprehensive plan to address homelessness."
Source:
Office of the Auditor General of British Columbia

Related links:

BC auditor confirms that province's homeless programs "not successful"
March 6, 2009
By Michael Shapcott
John Doyle, the British Columbia auditor, has just released a sobering review of homelessness programs that concludes that the provincial government “has not been successful in reducing homelessness. Clear goals and objectives for homelessness and adequate accountability for results remain outstanding. Government also lacks adequate information about the homeless and about the services already available to them — this hampers effective decision making. Finally, government has not yet established appropriate indicators of success to improve public accountability for results.” The auditor’s report echoes many of the themes raised by the United Nations’ Special Rapporteur on the Right to Adequate Housing in the final report on his fact-finding mission to Canada (See the links immediately below), which will be tabled at the UN Human Rights Council on Monday. The auditor calls for a much more thorough and pragmatic plan to end homelessness in British Columbia, and notes that many other jurisdictions have already adopted solid plans.
Wellesley Institute Blog
[ Wellesley Institute ]

The stench of vanishing money:
How Downtown Eastside welfare fraud adds to the area's misery and squalor
By Ethan Baron
March 6, 2009
"(...) More than 7,000 of the Downtown Eastside's 16,000 residents are on welfare, many living in the 3,500 single-room-occupancy (SRO) rooms owned by private landlords. These SROs are in effect government-subsidized housing, with profits going in many cases — and I'm not pointing a finger at the Brandiz, revolting as it is — to some landlords and managers who scam tenants out of their welfare money.
Source:
The Province
[Comment : curious, isn't it, how this headline leads one to believe that the article might be about welfare fraud, when in reality the fraud is perpetrated by unscrupulous private landlords ripping off welfare clients. Curious.]

See also:
Operation Phoenix : a year-long project by The Province, CKNW 980 and Global B.C.
We hope to engage the community in seeking solutions to the issues facing our most vulnerable citizens in the Downtown Eastside.
[ more about Operation Phoenix ]

- Go to the BC Government Links page: http://www.canadiansocialresearch.net/bcbkmrk.htm

3. Public pension consultations, March/April 2009 : Is this the beginning of the end of the "Cadillac" (indexed) pension for federal civil servants?

A real world solution for public pensions
By Mark Sutcliffe
March 7, 2009
"(...) What's good for the PS is good for Ottawa. But it's fair to ask whether a cherished benefit awarded to members of the public service should last forever. While the federal government begins looking at how to clean up the mess that has become of many private-sector pension funds, legislators at all levels may want to also consider this difficult question: Should we consider phasing out the defined-benefit, fully indexed pensions that are standard for government employees? (...) There's not much that can or should be done about existing public employees, who are contractually guaranteed their benefits. But could governments move toward establishing a defined-contribution plan, like those at most private-sector employers, for new public servants? Someday, should government workers carry as much of the burden for saving for their own retirement as everyone else? Thanks to union agreements, it won't be an easy process. But it's worth considering. Some may tremble at any element of uncertainty being introduced into public-sector pensions. Others would respond, welcome to the real world.
Source:
The Ottawa Citizen

---

Department of Finance Releases Schedule for Pension Consultations
News Release
March 4, 2009
The Department of Finance announced further details on the public consultations across Canada on the legislative and regulatory framework for federally regulated private pension plans, which are scheduled to begin March 13. The Government released a discussion paper [ PDF - 107K, 23 pages ] seeking views from Canadians on this issue on January 9. It followed up by announcing in Budget 2009: Canada's Economic Action Plan (January 27, 2009) that the national consultations will be chaired by Ted Menzies, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Finance.
- click the news release link above to access the scheduled dates and locations for the consultations.
- consultations will be held in :
Ottawa (March 13) - Halifax (March 17) - Montréal (March 18) - Toronto (March 20) - Vancouver (April 14) - Whitehorse (April 15) - Edmonton (April 16) - Winnipeg (April 17)

The federal government regulates private pension plans that are subject to the Pension Benefits Standards Act, 1985. These plans cover areas of employment under federal jurisdiction, including banking, telecommunications and interprovincial transportation. These plans currently represent 7 per cent of all private pension plans in Canada, accounting for approximately 12 per cent of pension assets. Canadians who wish to attend these consultations or send submissions on the discussion paper are invited to submit an e-mail to this address: pensions@fin.gc.ca

Related links:

Minister of Finance Launches National Consultations on Private Pensions
News Release
February 23, 2009

Budget 2009: Canada's Economic Action Plan - January 27, 2009

Minister of Finance Releases Discussion Paper on Private Pensions
News Release
January 9, 2009

Strengthening the Legislative and Regulatory Framework
for Private Pension Plans Subject to the Pension Benefits Standards Act, 1985

[ PDF version - 107K, 23 pages ]
January 2009
- incl. contact information for anyone wishing to submit any comments on the discussion paper

The closing date for these consultations is either March 16, 2009 or April 17.
The March 16 closing date appears in the January 9 news release, but the February 23 news release says that the consultations will end on April 17.

Source:
Department of Finance Canada

- Go to the Federal Government Department Links (Agriculture to Finance) page: http://www.canadiansocialresearch.net/fedbkmrk.htm
- Go to the Seniors (Social Research) Links page: http://www.canadiansocialresearch.net/seniors.htm

4. Ontario : Put Food in the Budget, says the Association of Local Public Health Agencies - March 3
(Wellesley Institute)

Ontario

Put Food in the Budget
March 3, 2009
By Brian Eng
Fighting poverty is the best medicine money can buy according to the Association of Local Public Health Agencies (alPHa). They partnering with the 25 in 5 Network for Poverty Reduction in an Ontario-wide campaign to urge the Ontario government to add a Healthy Food Supplement to the Basic Needs Allowance for all adult recipients of social assistance, as part of its Spring 2009 budget. (...) alPHa’s 36 member public health units have endorsed two separate resolutions since 2001 urging the Ontario Government to set social assistance rates according to the true costs of basic needs. The Put Food in the Budget campaign calls for the addition of a $100.00 Healthy Food Supplement to the Basic Needs Allowance as a down-payment on closing the gap between social assistance incomes and the cost of healthy eating. The campaign was launched on February 19 in Toronto by Toronto Medical Officer of Health Dr. David McKeown, with representatives from the Stop Community Food Centre and the 25 in 5 Network for Poverty Reduction.
Comment found in:
Wellesley Institute Blog
[ Wellesley Institute ]

Source:
Association of Local Public Health Agencies
We are a non-profit organization that provides leadership to boards of health and public health units in Ontario. Our members include board of health members of health units, medical and associate medical officers of health, and senior public health managers.

Related links:

* Put Food in the Budget campaign
* The Stop Community Food Centre
* 25 in 5 Network for Poverty Reduction

- Go to the Food Banks and Hunger Links page: http://www.canadiansocialresearch.net/foodbkmrk.htm
- Go to the Ontario Municipal and Non-Governmental Sites (A-C) page: http://www.canadiansocialresearch.net/onbkmrk2.htm

5. International Women's Day (March 8)

International Women's Day - Canada
Strong Leadership. Strong Women. Strong World: Equality
March 8, 2009
In 1977, the United Nations General Assembly adopted a resolution calling on member states to proclaim a day for women's rights and international peace. Following the United Nations' lead, Canada chose March 8 as International Women's Day. Each year at this time, Canadians celebrate progress toward equality for women and their full participation, reflect on the challenges and barriers that remain, and consider future steps to achieving equality for all women, in all aspects of their lives. (...) This year the theme is Strong Leadership. Strong Women. Strong World: Equality, reflecting the Government's firm belief that increasing women's participation and access to leadership roles and opportunities will help women and girls reach their full potential and help build a more prosperous Canada.
Source:
Status of Women Canada

Reality check:

September 2006 federal cuts to Women's programs
Happy International Women's Day from the Government of canada
...

National Association of Women and the Law closes its doors
September 20, 2007

Related links:

March 8, 2009 : International Women's Day
The International Women's Day website provides a free service to women around the world wanting to share and promote their IWD activity, videos, opinions and ideas. Please feel free to submit gender-related items for the site that you consider relevant and useful.
This service is provided by Aurora, a company that connects business and professional women and actively supports the promotion of employer brands and career opportunities in progressive organisations.

International Women's Day
-
from Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Related Web/News/Blog links:

Google Search Results Links - always current results!
Using the following search terms (without the quote marks):
"International Women's Day"
- Web search results page
- News search results page
- Blog Search Results page
Source:
Google.ca

- Go to the Canadian Government Sites about Women's Social Issues page: http://www.canadiansocialresearch.net/women.htm
- Go to the Links to International Sites about Women's Social Issues page: http://www.canadiansocialresearch.net/womeninternat.htm

6. Ontario needs to step up and tackle social deficit - March 4
(The Toronto Star)

Ontario needs to step up and tackle social deficit
Ottawa gave province fiscal breathing room but did little to help poor and unemployed
Opinion
March 4, 2009
By John Stapleton, Janet Gasparini and Neethan Shan
Two important questions faced Ontario's poverty reduction plan after its December release:
- How much further would Ontario's economy deteriorate?
-
What would the federal government do in its winter budget to support Ontario's goal to reduce poverty by 25 per cent in the next five years?
Well, we now have the answers. Ontario lost 71,000 of the 129,000 jobs lost in Canada in January 2009. And Ottawa intends to do just about nothing at all about poverty. (...) It's disappointing, to say the least, that the federal government chose to ignore its important role in supporting provincial moves to reduce poverty. But Ontario's finance minister still has plenty of options to demonstrate his own government means business when it comes to reducing poverty. There is no doubt that we live in difficult times and the economic parallels to the Great Depression are striking. But unlike the 1930s, we do not need to wait for years before we do something about it.

Source:
The Toronto Star

- Go to the Ontario Municipal and Non-Governmental Sites (D-W) page: http://www.canadiansocialresearch.net/onbkmrk3.htm

7. Where’s Home? A Picture of Housing Needs in Ontario, 2008 - March 3
(Ontario Non-Profit Housing Association & Co-operative Housing Federation of Canada)

Where's Home? - declining prospects in Ontario
March 3, 2009
By Michael Shapcott
As Ontario continues its slide into one of the deepest recessions in 50 years, the income gap between renters and home owners in the province continues to increase. This worrisome trend, combined with low vacancy rates in many areas and long waiting lists for social housing across the province, highlights the need for increased investment in affordable housing to protect families and create jobs, according to a report released on Monday. The eighth annual edition of Where’s Home? A Picture of Housing Needs in Ontario (2008) authored by the Ontario Non-Profit Housing Association (ONPHA) and the Co-operative Housing Federation of Canada (CHF Canada) Ontario Region, analyzes 22 separate housing markets across Ontario.
Comment found in:
Wellesley Institute Blog
[ Wellesley Institute ]

Complete report:

Where’s Home?
A Picture of Housing Needs in Ontario, 2008
(PDF - 1.8MB, 66 pages)
March 2009
"(...) Since 1999, the Ontario Non-Profit Housing Association (ONPHA) and the Co-operative Housing Federation of Canada (CHF Canada) have collaborated on Where’s Home?, a periodic report on the state of rental housing markets and rental housing affordability in 22 selected housing markets and the Province as a whole. As we have been tracking information on the rental market for several years, our analysis provides not only a snapshot of today’s rental housing markets and housing affordability, but also a picture of trends over the longer term. This report focuses on vacancy rates, rental housing production, changes in rents, incomes and housing affordability."
Source:
Ontario Non-Profit Housing Association (ONPHA)
Co-operative Housing Federation of Canada (CHF Canada)

2008 Market Summaries (PDF - 487K, 111 pages)
Detailed information for each of 22 Census Areas (CAs) and Census Metropolitan Areas (CMAs) in Ontario
- includes ten-year comparisons of a number of variables, including vacancy rates, changes in average rents compared to inflation, rent increases for a 2-bedroom apartment, proportion of income spent on housing, average household incomes of owners and tenants, ownership and rental housing completions, and more...

- Go to the Homelessness and Housing Links page: http://www.canadiansocialresearch.net/homeless.htm
- Go to the Ontario Municipal and Non-Governmental Sites (D-W) page: http://www.canadiansocialresearch.net/onbkmrk3.htm

8. What's New in The Daily (Statistics Canada):
--- Earnings differences between immigrants and the Canadian-born – The role of literacy skills - March 4
--- Self-reported delinquency of immigrant youth, Toronto 2006 - March 4
--- Foreign control in the Canadian economy, 2006 - March 4
---
Canadian economic accounts, fourth quarter 2008 and December 2008 - March 2
--- Financial flow accounts, fourth quarter 2008 - March 2

What's New in The Daily [Statistics Canada]:

March 4, 2009
The latest issue of StatCan's bi-monthly periodical Education Matters contains two feature articles:
* Earnings differences between immigrants and the Canadian-born – The role of literacy skills
* Self-reported delinquency of immigrant youth, Toronto 2006
Source:
Education Matters: Insights on Education,
Learning and Training in Canada : March 2009 issue

[ earlier issues of this periodical ]

March 4, 2009
Foreign control in the Canadian economy, 2006
Foreign acquisitions of Canadian-controlled firms, particularly in mining, manufacturing, retail and accommodation and food services industries, drove the 13.7% increase in assets under foreign control in 2006, the fastest rate of growth since 1999. Canadian assets under Canadian control rose 8.2%.
Excerpts:
- Over half of 2006 mining operating revenues and profits are foreign-controlled.
- Acquisitions drive double-digit growth in foreign-controlled assets.
- Foreign-controlled assets predominantly under US control, but their share decreased.
- Oil and gas leads double-digit growth in Canadian-controlled profits
* includes two tables:
--- Assets, operating revenues and operating profits in Canada, 2005 to 2006
---Total assets, operating revenue, and operating profits by industry, and shares under foreign control

March 2, 2009
Canadian economic accounts, fourth quarter 2008 and December 2008
Real gross domestic product (GDP) declined 0.8% in the fourth quarter, weakening progressively each month. Declines in exports, capital investment and personal expenditures all contributed to the economic contraction. Real GDP declined 1.0% in December. A more detailed analysis and additional data tables are available in Canadian Economic Accounts Quarterly Review.

March 2, 2009
Financial flow accounts, fourth quarter 2008
Funds borrowed on financial markets by domestic non-financial sectors increased in the fourth quarter of 2008. Federal government short-term paper and bond issues accounted for more than 50% of total activity. Non-financial corporations' new borrowings included a substantial increase in bank loans, as there was a significant drop in activity in both the bond and equity markets. Overall household borrowing slowed.

---

The Daily Archives - select a year and month from the drop-down menu to view releases in chronological order
[ Statistics Canada ]

- Go to the Employment Insurance Links section: http://www.canadiansocialresearch.net/hrsdc.htm#ei
- Go to the Federal Government Department Links (Fisheries and Oceans to Veterans Affairs) page: http://www.canadiansocialresearch.net/fedbkmrk2.htm

9. What's new from the Childcare Resource and Research Unit (Toronto) - March 4

From the Childcare Resource and Research Unit (CRRU):

March 4, 2009

Early childhood education and child care – Central to women’s equality
4 Mar 09
- To mark International Women’s Day 2009, CRRU has created a new issue file on ECEC and Canadian women.

What does CEDAW mean for child care in Canada?
4 Mar 09
- Brief from CCAAC on the UN Convention to Eliminate all forms of Discrimination against Women and recommendations for Canada highlighting sections on child care.

Early years- How do they do it in Sweden?
4 Mar 09
- Video from Teachers TV based in the UK exploring the Swedish approach to nursery education.

International perspectives on quality in mixed economies of childcare
4 Mar 09
- Power Point slides based on a paper by Helen Penn reviewing international perspectives on quality in mixed economies of child care in a number of countries.

more WHAT'S NEW ONLINE »

child care in the news

· Women must confront Ottawa's anti-equality agenda [CA]
3 Mar 09

· U of A signs with private day care [CA-AB]
2 Mar 09

· Initial bids for ABC Learning NZ assets [AU]
27 Feb 09

· Buyers for ABC scared off [AU]
27 Feb 09

· Funtastic sinks to loss after ABC write-offs [AU]
27 Feb 09

· Worrying cutbacks affecting Canada's human capital advantage [CA]
25 Feb 09

more CC IN THE NEWS »

Related Links:

Subscribe to the CRRU email announcements list
Sign up to receive email notices of updates and new postings on the CRRU website which will inform you of policy developments in early childhood care and education, new research and resources for policy, newly released CRRU publications, and upcoming events of interest to the child care and broader community.

Links to child care sites in Canada and elsewhere

CRRU Publications - briefing notes, factsheets, occasional papers and other publications
ISSUE files - theme pages, each filled with contextual information and links to further info

Source:
Childcare Resource and Research Unit (CRRU)

- Go to the Non-Governmental Early Learning and Child Care Links page: http://www.canadiansocialresearch.net/ecd2.htm

10. Poverty Dispatch: U.S. media coverage of social issues and programs
(
Institute for Research on Poverty - University of Wisconsin-Madison)

Poverty Dispatch (U.S). ===> the content of this link changes twice a week
IRP compiles and distributes Poverty Dispatches twice a week. Each issue of the dispatch provides links to U.S. web-based news items dealing with topics such as poverty, welfare reform, child welfare, education, health, hunger, Medicare and Medicaid, etc.
Each Dispatch lists links to current news in popular print media.

March 5, 2009
* Medicaid Spending and Reform - Florida, Rhode Island, New York
* Children's Health Insurance Coverage - Maryland
* Homelessness and Housing - New York City, Miami
* Joblessness and Unemployment
* Access to Food Assistance
* Economic Stimulus Spending
* Agriculture and Drought - California
* High School Dropout Age - Michigan, Kentucky
* School Voucher Programs
* Child Poverty - Wales, UK
* Internet Access and the Poor
* Rewards for Academic Achievement
* One Laptop Per Child Program

March 2, 2009
* Joblessness and Unemployment
* Cash Assistance Amounts - Minnesota
* Homeless Children and Families
* State Medicaid Programs - Ohio, Mississippi
* Recession and State Budgets
* Health and Welfare Spending in the Federal Budget
* Home Energy and Weatherization
* Nurse-Family Partnership Program
* Access to Bank Accounts - Los Angeles, CA
* Study: States and Spending on Corrections
* 'Witnesses to Hunger' Project

Past Poverty Dispatches
- links to two dispatches a week back to June 2006

Search Poverty Dispatches

If you wish to receive Poverty Dispatches by e-mail,
please send a request to rsnell@ssc.wisc.edu

Source:
Institute for Research on Poverty (IRP)
[ University of Wisconsin-Madison ]

- Go to the Links to American Government Social Research page: http://www.canadiansocialresearch.net/us.htm
- Go to the Links to American Non-Governmental Social Research (A-J) page: http://www.canadiansocialresearch.net/us2.htm
- Go to the Links to American Non-Governmental Social Research (M-Z) page: http://www.canadiansocialresearch.net/us3.htm

- Go to the Poverty Measures - International Resources page: http://www.canadiansocialresearch.net/poverty2.htm

11. One in 31 U.S. Adults are Behind Bars, on Parole or Probation - March 2
(Pew Center on the States)

One in 31 U.S. Adults are Behind Bars, on Parole or Probation
Press Release
Washington, DC
March 2, 2009
Explosive growth in the number of people on probation or parole has propelled the population of the American corrections system to more than 7.3 million, or 1 in every 31 U.S. adults, according to a report released today by the Pew Center on the States. The vast majority of these offenders live in the community, yet new data in the report finds that nearly 90 percent of state corrections dollars are spent on prisons. One in 31: The Long Reach of American Corrections examines the scale and cost of prison, jail, probation and parole in each of the 50 states, and provides a blueprint for states to cut both crime and spending by reallocating prison expenses to fund stronger supervision of the large number of offenders in the community.

Complete report:

One in 31: The Long Reach of American Corrections (PDF - 2MB, 48 pages)
Key findings include:
* One in 31 adults in America is in prison or jail, or on probation or parole (vs 1 in 77 twenty-five years ago).
* Overall, two-thirds of offenders are in the community, not behind bars.
* Correctional control rates are highly concentrated by race and geography: 9.2% black adults, 3.7% Hispanic adults, 2.2% white adults; 5.5% men, 1.1% women
* Georgia, where 1 in 13 adults is behind bars or under community supervision, leads the top five states that also include Idaho, Texas, Massachusetts, Ohio and the District of Columbia.
The report also analyzes the cost of current sentencing and corrections policies.

Source:
Pew Center on the States
[ Pew Charitable Trusts ]
The Pew Charitable Trusts applies the power of knowledge to solve today's most challenging problems.
Pew's Center on the States identifies and advances state policy solutions.

NOTE: For Canadian crime and justice statistics, see http://www.canadiansocialresearch.net/stats.htm#crime
[Part of the Canadian Social Research Links Social Statistics Links page:
http://www.canadiansocialresearch.net/stats.htm ]

- Go to the Links to American Non-Governmental Social Research (M-Z) Links page: http://www.canadiansocialresearch.net/us3.htm

12. [U.S.] Annual Update of the Health and Human Services Poverty Guidelines (2009) - January 23
( Department of Health and Human Services)

Annual Update of the Health and Human Services Poverty Guidelines - 2009
On January 23, 2009, the Department of Health and Human Services, published its annual update of the Poverty Guidelines, taking into account increases in prices as measured by the Consumer Price Index.

"There are two slightly different versions of the federal poverty measure: the poverty thresholds and the poverty guidelines.

The poverty thresholds are the original version of the federal poverty measure. They are updated each year by the Census Bureau (although they were originally developed by Mollie Orshansky of the Social Security Administration). The thresholds are used mainly for statistical purposes — for instance, preparing estimates of the number of Americans in poverty each year. (In other words, all official poverty population figures are calculated using the poverty thresholds, not the guidelines.) Poverty thresholds since 1980 and weighted average poverty thresholds since 1959 are available on the Census Bureau’s Web site. For an example of how the Census Bureau applies the thresholds to a family’s income to determine its poverty status, see “How the Census Bureau Measures Poverty” on the Census Bureau’s web site.

The poverty guidelines are the other version of the federal poverty measure. They are issued each year in the Federal Register by the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). The guidelines are a simplification of the poverty thresholds for use for administrative purposes — for instance, determining financial eligibility for certain federal programs. (The full text of the Federal Register notice with the 2009 poverty guidelines is available.)

The poverty guidelines are sometimes loosely referred to as the “federal poverty level” (FPL), but that phrase is ambiguous and should be avoided, especially in situations (e.g., legislative or administrative) where precision is important.

Key differences between poverty thresholds and poverty guidelines are outlined in a table under Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs).
See also the discussion of this topic on the Institute for Research on Poverty’s web site.."

Source:
Office of Human Services Policy
[Office of the Assistant Secretary for Planning & Evaluation ]
[ Department of Health and Human Services ]

-------------------------------------------
COMMENT:
This is a distinction between the Canadian and American government poverty measurement --- in the U.S., a person's or household's eligibility for certain programs is actually tied to an official federal government poverty measure. (However, eligibility for state welfare programs that fall under the federal Temporary Assistance for Needy Families umbrella is means-tested and not related to any poverty measure.) In Canada, eligibility for all provincial and territorial welfare programs for individuals and families is "needs-tested". Needs-testing and means-testing mean the same thing in this context --- they both involve a test that takes into account a household's financial resources and its needs. The needs test and income test are discussed in more detail on the Welfare Reforms in Canada page - http://www.canadiansocialresearch.net/welref.htm (near the top of the page).

-------------------------------------------
Related Reading:
- highly recommended!
-------------------------------------------

Further Resources on Poverty Measurement, Poverty Lines,
and Their History
Table of Contents:
- Introduction
- Background Paper on the Poverty Guidelines
- Programs That Do — and Don’t — Use the Poverty Guidelines
- The Official Federal Statistical Definition of Poverty
- Mollie Orshansky’s Development of the Poverty Thresholds
- Research on Alternative Approaches to Poverty Measurement
- Papers by ASPE Staff Relating to the History of Poverty Lines
- For Further Questions

The Development and History of the Poverty Thresholds
By Gordon M. Fisher
Social Security Bulletin
Volume 55, Number 4
1992

Previous HHS Poverty Guidelines
and Federal Register References
- back to 1996

Related link:

Poverty Thresholds (1973-2007 and selected earlier years back to 1959)
(from the U.S. Census Bureau)

- Go to the Poverty Measures - International Resources page: http://www.canadiansocialresearch.net/poverty2.htm
- Go to the Links to American Government Social Research Links page: http://www.canadiansocialresearch.net/us.htm

13. Remembering Mollie Orshansky—The Developer of the [U.S.] Poverty Thresholds - December 2008
(Social Security Online)

Remembering Mollie Orshansky—The Developer of the [U.S.] Poverty Thresholds
by Gordon M. Fisher
December 2008
HTML version
PDF version
(289K, 5 pages)
In a federal government career that lasted more than four decades, Mollie Orshansky worked for the Children's Bureau, the Department of Agriculture, the Social Security Administration, and other agencies. While working at the Social Security Administration during the 1960s, she developed the poverty thresholds that became the federal government's official statistical measure of poverty; her thresholds remain a major feature of the architecture of American social policy and are widely known internationally.
Source:
Social Security Bulletin, Vol. 68 No. 3, 2008
[ earlier issues of the Social Security Bulletin ]
[ Social security Online - The Official Website of the U.S. Social Security Administration ]

- Go to the Poverty Measures - International Resources page: http://www.canadiansocialresearch.net/poverty2.htm
- Go to the Links to American Government Social Research Links page: http://www.canadiansocialresearch.net/us.htm

14. Reports from the United Nations Human Rights Council - March 5
(10th Session of the UN Human Rights Council - March 2-27, 2009)

Reports from the United Nations Human Rights Council - March 5
(10th Session of the UN Human Rights Council - March 2-27, 2009)

United Nations to Canada: You're failing in your housing obligations...
March 5, 2009
By Michael Shapcott
Canada has a long and successful history of housing programs that have provided a good home to literally hundreds of thousands of households, but much of that history has been shredded by almost two decades of funding cuts, downloading and cancellation of programs at the federal level, and also at lower levels of government. That's the official verdict of Miloon Kothari, the United Natons' Special Rapporteur on the Right to Adequate Housing. The full report will be presented to the United Nations' Human Rights Council on Monday. The Wellesley Institute was pleased to help organize the civil society portion of Mr. Kothari's fact-finding mission to Canada, and also to provide research and policy assistance.
Comment found in:
Wellesley Institute Blog
[ Wellesley Institute ]

Complete report:

Report of the Special Rapporteur on adequate housing as a component of the right
to an adequate standard of living, and on the right to non-discrimination in this context
(PDF - 155K, 27 pages)
17 February 2009
By Miloon Kothari
At the invitation of the Government, the Special Rapporteur conducted a mission to Canada from 9 to 22 October 2007. The visit focused on four areas: homelessness; women and their right to adequate housing; Aboriginal populations; adequate housing and the possible impact of the 2010 Olympic Games on the right to adequate housing in Vancouver.
Source:
Reports for the 10th session of the Human Rights Council
NOTE: Click the link in the preceding line to access links to dozens of reports submitted to 10th session of the Human Rights Council; reports are organized by country and by theme.
Below, you'll find links to a selection of those reports.

Report of the Special Rapporteur on adequate housing as a component of the right
to an adequate standard of living, and on the right to non-discrimination in this context
(PDF - 105K, 25 pages)
4 February 2009
By Raquel Rolnik
The recent housing and mortgage crisis and the subsequent financial crisis have been at the forefront of the media and international attention. Yet, little has been said about their global impact on the right to adequate housing. In October 2008, the Special Rapporteur shared her concerns with the General Assembly. Encouraged by a number of delegations, she decided to devote her first report to the Human Rights Council to this issue. The first section of the present report discusses the housing/mortgage and financial crisis. The second part relates these crises to the prevalent economic, financial and housing policies and approaches and their impact on the right to adequate housing. The report concludes with a number of preliminary recommendations to address the current situation including consideration of the issue by the Human Rights Council.

Report of the Special Rapporteur on the right to food (PDF - 104K, 22 pages)
The role of development cooperation and food aid in realizing
the right to adequate food: moving from charity to obligation
11 February 2009
By Olivier De Schutter
This report examines the contribution of development cooperation and food aid to the realization of the right to food. Development cooperation and food aid increasingly form a continuum ranging from interventions aimed at providing long-term support for food security to short-term answers to emergency situations. Both these policies have been under increased scrutiny in recent years, and both are in need of reform.

Report of the 2008 Social Forum (Geneva, 1-3 September 2008) (PDF - 110K, 29 pages)
16 January 2009
The present report contains a summary of discussions and recommendations of the 2008 Social Forum, held in Geneva from 1 to 3 September 2008, in accordance with Human Rights Council resolution 6/13. In that resolution, the Council decided to preserve the Social Forum as a vital space for dialogue between the representatives of Member States and civil society, including grass-roots organizations and intergovernmental organizations, on issues linked with
the national and international environment needed for the promotion of the enjoyment of all human rights by all.

10th session of the Human Rights Council (Geneva, 2 – 27 March 2009)
- Main page, includes links to the agenda, the program, the reports, background info on the Human Rights Council and much more...

Human Rights Council
The Human Rights Council is an inter-governmental body within the UN system made up of 47 States responsible for strengthening the promotion and protection of human rights around the globe. The Council was created by the UN General Assembly on 15 March 2006 with the main purpose of addressing situations of human rights violations and make recommendations on them.
[ this link is part of Human Rights Bodies ]
[ ...which is part of UN High Commissioner for Human Rights ]
[... which is part of the United Nations ]

- Go to the Human Rights Links page: http://www.canadiansocialresearch.net/rights.htm
- Go to the Homelessness and Housing Links page: http://www.canadiansocialresearch.net/homeless.htm

15. Australian Policy Online Weekly Briefing - selected recent content

APO Weekly Briefing
The content of this page changes each week, and it includes links to a few book/report reviews, about two dozen new reports, a few job ads and 60 events (mostly conferences) of interest to social researchers...
Source:
Australian Policy Online (APO) - home page
With nearly 120 member centres and institutes, Australian Policy Online offers easy access to much of the best Australian social, economic, cultural and political research available online.
NOTE: the APO home page includes links to the five most popular reports on the APO website, and this list is updated each week.

APO Archive
The APO archive is grouped into 23 subject areas, with entries appearing in reverse chronological order.
* Ageing *Asia and the pacific * Citizenship and the law * Disability * Economics and trade * Education * Employment and workplace relations * The environment * Foreign policy and defence * Gender and sexuality * Health * Housing * Families and households * Immigration and refugees * Income, poverty and wealth * Indigenous * Media, communications and cultural policy * Politics and government * Population, multiculturalism and ethnicity * Religion and faith * Rural and regional * Science and technology * Social policy * Urban and regional planning * Youth

- Go to the Social Research Links in Other Countries (Non-Government) page: http://www.canadiansocialresearch.net/internatngo.htm

16. CRINMAIL - March 2009
(Child Rights Information Network - CRIN)

From the Child Rights Information Network (CRIN):

5 March 2009 - CRINMAIL 1064
* CHILD HELPLINES: Violence Against Children Follow-up report [publication]
* UNITED STATES: A Violent Education [publication]
* HUMAN RIGHTS COUNCIL: 10th session opens [news]
* UN: Working with the United Nations Human Rights Programme: A Handbook for Civil Society [publication]
* SOUTH AFRICA: Child sentencing laws challenged [news]
* TURKEY: 4th UCW Seminar on child labour, education and youth employment
* EMPLOYMENT: UNICEF - War Child
**NEWS IN BRIEF**

3 March 2009 - CRINMAIL 1063
* MAURITANIA: Force-feeding 'sends Mauritania backwards' [news]
* VIOLENCE: Protect the Children! A guide to those working and living with children affected by violence [publication]
* DISABILITY: Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities meets for the first time [news]
* SCOTLAND: Criminal age to go up to 12 [news]
* EUROPE: New coalition to tackle online child porn [news]
* KENYA: Refugee family fights landmark adoption case [news]
* EMPLOYMENT: UNICEF - ECPAT UK
**NEWS IN BRIEF**

Earlier issues of CRINMAIL
- links to 300+ earlier weekly issues
, many of which are special editions focusing on special themes, such as the 45th Session of the Committee on the Rights of the Child and the Convention on the Rights of the Child.

Source:
CRINMAIL(incl. subscription info)
[ Child Rights Information Network (CRIN) ]

- Go to the Children's Rights Links page: http://www.canadiansocialresearch.net/chnrights.htm

 

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Links presented in the Canadian Social Research Newsletter point to different views about social policy and social programs.
There are some that I don't agree with, so don't get on my case, eh...

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http://www.canadiansocialresearch.net/news.htm

Please feel free to distribute this newsletter as widely as you wish, but please remember to mention Canadian Social Research Links when you do.

Cheers!
Gilles

E-MAIL:
gilseg@rogers.com


********************

Court Transcripts

********************

Actual Court Statements:

Q: What is your date of birth?
A: July fifteenth.
Q: What year?
A: Every year.

Q: What gear were you in at the moment of the impact?
A: Gucci sweats and Reeboks.

Q: How old is your son, the one living with you?
A: Thirty-eight or thirty-five, I can't remember which.
Q: How long has he lived with you?
A: Forty-five years.

Q: What was the first thing your husband said to you when he woke thatmorning?
A: He said, "Where am I, Cathy?"
Q: And why did that upset you?
A: My name is Susan.

Q: And where was the location of the accident?
A: Approximately milepost 499.
Q: And where is milepost 499?
A: Probably between milepost 498 and 500.

Q: Did you blow your horn or anything?
A: After the accident?
Q: Before the accident.
A: Sure, I played for ten years. I even went to school for it.

Q: Do you know if your daughter has ever been involved in voodoo or the occult?
A: We both do.
Q: Voodoo?
A: We do.
Q: You do?
A: Yes, voodoo.

Q: Now doctor, isn't it true that when a person dies in his sleep, he doesn't know about it until the next morning?

Q: The youngest son, the twenty-year old, how old is he?

Q: Were you present when your picture was taken?

Q: So the date of conception (of the baby) was August eighth?
A: Yes.
Q: And what were you doing at that time?

Q: She had three children, right?
A: Yes.
Q: How many were boys?
A: None.
Q: Were there any girls?

Q: You say the stairs went down to the basement?
A: Yes.
Q: And these stairs, did they go up also?

Q: How was your first marriage terminated?
A: By death.
Q: And by whose death was it terminated?

Q: Is your appearance here this morning pursuant to a deposition notice which I sent to your attorney?
A: No, this is how I dress when I go to work.

Q: Doctor, how many autopsies have you performed on dead people?
A: All my autopsies are performed on dead people.

Q: All your responses must be oral, OK? What school did you go to?
A: Oral.

Q: Doctor, before you performed the autopsy, did you check for a pulse?
A: No.
Q: Did you check for blood pressure?
A: No.
Q: Did you check for breathing?
A: No.
Q: So, then it is possible that the patient was alive when you began the autopsy?
A: No.
Q: How can you be so sure, Doctor?
A: Because his brain was sitting on my desk in a jar.
Q: But could the patient have still been alive nevertheless?
A: Yes, it is possible that he could have been alive and practicing law somewhere.

More Courtroom Quotes:
http://www.thehumorarchives.com/joke/Real_Court_Room_Quotes


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And, in closing...

***************************

TED : Ideas Worth Spreading
[NOTE : these videos may not work if you're behind a network firewall; if that's the case, try viewing them at home]

TED stands for Technology, Entertainment, Design. It started out in 1984 as a conference bringing together people from those three worlds. Since then its scope has become ever broader. The annual conference now brings together the world's most fascinating thinkers and doers, who are challenged to give the talk of their lives (in 18 minutes). This site makes the best talks and performances from TED available to the public, for free. More than 200 talks from our archive are now available, with more added each week. These videos are released under a Creative Commons license, so they can be freely shared and reposted.

TED themes
* Technology * Entertainment * Design * Business * Science * Culture * Arts * Global issues

Sample video:

New insights on poverty and life around the world : Hans Rosling (19 minutes)
Hans Rosling is Professor of International Health at Karolinska Institutet (Sweden) and Director of the Gapminder Foundation.

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