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 1721
Scroll to the bottom of this newsletter to see some notes and a disclaimer.
1. Poverty in Canada:
2006 Update (Chris Sarlo, Fraser Institute) - November 9
2. The Parkland Institute and private health insurance (Parkland Institute) - November 6
3. What's New from Statistics Canada:
--- Provincial and territorial economic accounts, 2002 to 2005 - November 8
--- Homicides, 2005 - November 8
--- University enrolment, 2004/2005 - November 7
--- University degrees, diplomas and certificates awarded, 2004 - November 7
4. What's New from the Ministry of Community and Social Services in Ontario:
--- Social Assistance Rate Increase - November 2 (?)
--- A New Vision for Ontario's Social Assistance Programs - November 1 (?)
--- McGuinty Government Helps Boost Profile Of People With Disabilities In Canadian Media - October 24
--- Making Ontario More Accessible To People With Disabilities - October 23
--- Ontario Disability Support Program Special Payments - October 2 (?)
--- Employment Innovations Fund - Examples of Innovative Partnerships - August 30 (?)
5. What's New from the Canadian Union of Public Employees:
--- Thirty Years of Dwindling Minimum Wages in Canada - November 6
--- Taxes, Productivity & Competitiveness: It’s Not the Tax Cuts that Matter - September 2006
6. What's New from the Childcare Resource and Research Unit (University of Toronto) - November 10
7. Poverty Dispatch: U.S. media coverage of social issues and programs
8. Human Development Report 2006 (United Nations Development Programme) - November 9
9. Spread the Net campaign (Montreal Millennium Promise Conference) - November 9
10. Two conferences:
--- Global Microcredit Summit - November 12-15, 2006, Halifax
--- World Forum 2006 - Future Directions in Child Care - November 19 – 22, 2006, Vancouver
1. Poverty in Canada: 2006 Update
- November 9
Poverty in Canada Hits Record Low
November 9, 2006
Toronto, ON - The proportion of Canadians living in poverty fell to 4.9 per cent in 2004, the lowest level in history, according to a new report published by The Fraser Institute, Poverty in Canada: 2006 Update. “Poverty rates have decreased substantially, falling to 4.9 per cent in 2004 from 7.8 per cent in 1996,” said report author Chris Sarlo, a senior fellow with the Fraser Institute and Nipissing University economics professor. “This fall in poverty rates is especially encouraging following a lengthy period of stagnation throughout the 1980s and early to mid-1990s.” Dramatic improvements were also recorded in the proportion of children living in poverty. Child poverty rates nearly halved between 1996 and 2004, falling to 5.8 per cent from 10.9 per cent.
Canada: 2006 Update
Complete update (PDF file - 580K, 7 pages)
"This Fraser Alert uses the most recent data available (2004) to update the basic needs poverty lines and estimates poverty in Canada."
The Fraser Institute
Related Links from the Fraser
(Earlier reports by Chris Sarlo on absolute poverty):
Poverty in Canada
Report Part I (PDF file - 236K, 10 pages) - cover, table of contents, executive summary
Report Part II (PDF file - 982K, 50 pages) - main chapters of the report
Report Part III (PDF file - 284K, 22 pages) - appendices
in Canada - 2nd Edition, 1996 (First published 1992)
By Christopher A. Sarlo
- incl. links to all chapters of the report (except, curiously enough, Chapter 10: "Social Assistance and Poverty")
NOTE: I couldn't find this report on the Fraser Institute's website, so I went to The Internet Archive and searched earlier "snapshots" of the Fraser website for the report.
Counterpoint / Editorial Comment:
Whenever the Fraser Institute hails another milestone in the evolution of our country ("Poverty hits record low!"), the devil's in the details. The headline in the preceding sentence almost makes us want to cancel our annual feel-good donations to the Food Bank, the Snowsuit Fund, the Christmas Exchange and other worthy seasonal charities. The "record low" is in fact based on an absolute measure of poverty, often referred to by people like me as Christopher Sarlo's (and Fraser's) "calorie-from-starvation" diet. The Sarlo poverty lines are the bible for those who would like nothing better than to gut what's left of Canada's programs of last resort. After all, if poverty is hitting record lows, why do we need such costly social programs as welfare and the National Child Benefit?
One of the main conclusions
of the Poverty in Canada update is that "(T)he lack of an 'official' poverty measure
makes it difficult to hold politicians to account for the effectiveness of expensive
programs intended to alleviate poverty in Canada." Note to the Fraser Institute:
when the Canada Assistance Plan was replaced by the Canada Health and Social Transfer
(CHST) in 1996, that spelled the end of (federal) accountability for the largest
of the "programs intended to alleviate poverty in Canada" - welfare. That's because
under the CHST, the federal government's financial contributions to the provinces
and territories specifically for welfare and social services were combined with
its contributions for insured health services and post-secondary education. As
of 1996, it became impossible to tell how much the feds were contributing to health,
to welfare or to post-secondary education in any jurisdiction. Well, maybe not
impossible, but the federal and provincial/territorial numbers were definitely
not the same. In 2004, the federal government split off the health component of
the CHST as a new Canada Health Transfer, and that left welfare with post-secondary
education under the new Canada Social Transfer. This allowed the federal health
contribution to be isolated (although still contentious), but the federal spending
on welfare and post-secondary education were lumped together, and they remain
lumped together today.
For links to more info on federal contributions to provincial/territorial welfare programs, go to the Canada Assistance Plan / Canada Health and Social Transfer / Canada Social Transfer Resources page: http://www.canadiansocialresearch.net/cap.htm
According to the latest Poverty Profile by the National Council of Welfare (see the Council's
publications page for links), the richest 20 percent of Canadian households have a 43.7% share of total after-tax income while the poorest 20 percent have a 5.0% share. It's the income gap between the rich and the poor --- relative poverty --- that must be reduced, not poverty as defined in absolute terms by a conservative think tank. Canada is one of the richest industrialized countries in the world; we shouldn't measure poverty the same way as we do for a Third World country.
- Go to
the Poverty Measures - Canadian Resources page: http://www.canadiansocialresearch.net/poverty.htm
2. The Parkland Institute
and private health insurance - November 6
Manningcare failed before, it will fail again.
Private health insurance too costly.
by Diana Gibson
November 6, 2006
Preston Manning identifies real problems with Canada's health-care system, but his prescriptions do not hit the mark. Most notably, he, like his father Ernest Manning, favours private health insurance. Ernest Manning already tried private health insurance when he was the premier and it was a dismal failure.
The Parkland Institute is an Alberta research network situated within the Faculty of Arts at the University of Alberta. It operates within the established and distinctive tradition of Canadian political economy and is non-partisan.
above column was written in response to the following article
written last week by Preston Manning and Mark Milke:
our next premier lead the health-care revolution?
Preston Manning and Mark Milke, Freelance
October 30, 2006
If contenders for Alberta's Progressive Conservative leadership wish to lead the necessary health-care revolution in Canada, they and every Albertan will gain much by considering what an excellent health-care system should look like.
Earlier Parkland op-eds on the subject of health care:
Health Care, Stephen Harper Doesn't Walk the Talk
by Diana Gibson
December 18, 2005
Fraud in private health insurance should surprise no one
by Diana Gibson
November 9, 2005
- Go to the Alberta Links page: http://www.canadiansocialresearch.net/abkmrk.htm
New from Statistics Canada:
What's New from The Daily [Statistics Canada]:
Provincial and territorial economic accounts, 2002 to 2005
Economic growth in Western Canada outpaced the national average in 2005, while activity east of the Manitoba-Ontario border waned.
A detailed analysis of the provincial economies is available in the Provincial and Territorial Economic Accounts Review.
The national homicide rate increased for the second consecutive year in 2005 to its highest point in nearly a decade, after reaching a 30-year low in 2003. The number of homicides committed with a firearm rose for the third year in a row.
in Canada, 2005 (PDF file - 272K, 26 pages)
This Juristat examines homicide trends at the national, provincial/territorial and census metropolitan area levels. Information describing the methods used to commit homicide (including the use of fi rearms), accused-victim relationships (such as spousal or other family-related homicides), gang-related homicides, victims’ involvement in illegal activities, the use of alcohol and drugs, and youth homicides is also presented.
Juristat <=== incl. links to 100+ articles in previous editions of Juristat going back to December 1996
This series of reports provides detailed statistics and analysis on a variety of topics and issues concerning Canada's justice system. Annual Juristats are produced on areas such as: crime, homicide, youth and adult courts, and corrections. Additional Juristats are also produced each year on current topics of interest to the justice community. This is a unique periodical, of great interest to those who have to plan, establish, administer and evaluate justice programs and projects, or anyone who has an interest in Canada's justice system.
University enrolment, 2004/2005
Enrolment in Canadian universities surpassed the one-million mark for the first time during the academic year 2004/2005, in the wake of Ontario's double cohort, rising numbers of foreign students and growing numbers of young adults. In total, there were 1.01 million registrations in universities, the seventh consecutive year in which enrolment hit a record high. However, this was up only 2.1% from the previous academic year, the lowest growth rate this decade.
- includes three tables showing:
(a) university enrolment by registration status and gender (full-time/part-time, undergrad, graduate, 1999/2000 to 2004/2005), comparing 2004 with 1996, 2002 and 2003.
(b) university enrolment by field of study and gender, 1999/2000 to 2004/2005
(c) university enrolment by province, full-time and part-time students, 1999/2000 to 2004/2005
University degrees, diplomas and certificates awarded, 2004
University students received a record number of bachelor's and master's degrees in 2004, as the overall number of degrees, certificates and diplomas rose for the sixth straight year. Universities granted a record high 209,100 degrees, diplomas and certificates in 2004, up 5.3% from 2003, and an increase of more than 30,000 over the last three years. An all-time high of 168,700 students received an undergraduate degree, a 4.7% gain from 2003 and the sixth consecutive annual increase. Just over 31,600 students received a master's level qualification in 2004, up 9.0% from the previous year and the seventh annual increase in a row. For the first time, master's level qualifications represented more than 15% of all qualifications awarded.
- includes a table showing university qualifications awarded by program level and gender, and a table showing university qualifications awarded by field of study and gender
- Go to the Federal Government Department
Links (Fisheries and Oceans to Veterans Affairs) page: http://www.canadiansocialresearch.net/fedbkmrk2.htm
- Go to the Canadian Universities and Colleges Links page: http://www.canadiansocialresearch.net/univbkmrk.htm
New from the Ministry
of Community and Social Services in Ontario:
What's New from the Ontario Ministry of Community and Social Services:
Assistance Rate Increase
[Undated text - "page last modified November 02, 2006"]
The Ontario government is increasing the maximum monthly social assistance rates by 2% for recipients of benefits under the Ontario Disability Support Program (ODSP) and Ontario Works (OW). The increases come into effect in November and December, respectively, and they apply to all basic needs allowances, shelter, board and lodging rates. Northern allowances, and special allowances paid to people in certain institutions and guide dog users. The 2% increase also applies to Back to School and Winter Clothing Allowances for eligible recipients with children under the age of 18. Families receiving assistance under the Assistance for Children with Severe Disabilities program (payable to a parent with a child with a severe disability) will see the maximum monthly allowance increase from $400 to $410 per month, a 2.5% increase.
New Vision for Ontario's Social Assistance Programs
[Undated text - "page last modified November 01, 2006"]
"The Ministry of Community and Social Services is working hard to improve the way Ontario’s social assistance system works. The ministry is making significant changes to the way Ontario’s social assistance programs — Ontario Works and the Ontario Disability Support Program — are delivered. Many of these changes are in direct response to what Deb Matthews, Parliamentary Assistant to the Minister of Community and Social Services, heard during her discussions with social assistance recipients, community organizations and municipalities in 2004. Stakeholders called for the removal of barriers and disincentives to employment and greater emphasis on the supports recipients need to help them find and keep meaningful jobs."
- incl. a list of 10 recent program changes designed to help people move from welfare to long-term self-sufficiency
Read the report by Deb Matthews:
of Employment Assistance Programs in Ontario Works &
Ontario Disability Support Program (PDF file - 167K, 48 pages)
October 24, 2006
McGuinty Government Helps Boost Profile Of People With Disabilities In Canadian Media
TORONTO – The McGuinty government today launched a new partnership aimed at raising the profile of people with disabilities in the Canadian movie, television and radio industry, announced Madeleine Meilleur, Minister of Community and Social Services.
October 23, 2006
Making Ontario More Accessible To People With Disabilities
TORONTO – The McGuinty government has made important progress towards implementing the landmark Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act, 2005, which will make Ontario fully accessible by 2025, Community and Social Services Minister Madeleine Meilleur announced today.
Disability Support Program Special Payments
[Undated text - "page last modified October 2, 2006"]
Since the Ontario Disability Support Program (ODSP) was created in June 1998, recipients had been limited to receiving up to four months of retroactive income support, even if they had to wait longer than four months to be reviewed and determined eligible for the program. On May 31, 2006, the government announced that it had removed this limit. The government will now be providing a special payment to eligible people who had to wait longer than four months to be granted ODSP income support. People who waited longer than four months to be granted ODSP, but who only received the previous limit of four months of retroactive income support may be eligible to receive a special payment for additional months of support they did not receive when the limit was in place. There are an estimated 13,000 to 19,000 cases that may be eligible for a special payment. (..) Starting in October 2006, a dedicated team will begin to identify and contact current and former ODSP recipients who were impacted by the four-month rule.
Innovations Fund - Examples of Innovative Partnerships
[Undated text - "page last modified August 30, 2006"]
As part of the 2006 provincial budget, the government established the Employment Innovations Fund to engage Ontario's employers in creating and expanding job opportunities for people receiving financial assistance from Ontario Works or the Ontario Disability Support Program.
- Go to the Ontario Government Links page: http://www.canadiansocialresearch.net/onbkmrk.htm
New from the Canadian Union of Public Employees:
What's New from the Canadian Union of Public Employees:
Thirty Years of Dwindling
Minimum Wages in Canada
Nov 6, 2006
The campaign for living wages has gathered momentum with bills sponsored by NDP members in both the federal Parliament and the Ontario legislature to increase the minimum wage to $10/hour. The just-released report on Federal Labour Standards also strongly recommended that the federal minimum wage be reintroduced at a level that would allow full-time workers to live above the poverty line. Federal and provincial politicians claim that we can’t afford it. But as Commissioner Harry Arthurs stated in this report, "This is an issue of fundamental decency that no modern, prosperous country like Canada can ignore." The real value of the minimum wage everywhere in Canada is now not just far below the poverty line, but also far below what it was thirty years ago, as the following CUPE Economic Brief shows. And contrary to what some politicians and low wage employers claim, increasing the minimum wage tends to have few negative economic impacts and is often positive. We can afford it and we should do it.
of Dwindling Minimum Wages in Canada (PDF file - 147K, 2 pages)
Related Links from the Federal Labour Standards Review Commission:
Fairness at Work:
Federal Labour Standards for the21st Century
PDF version (1.5MB, 324 pages)
"Commissioner Harry Arthurs was appointed by the Minister of Labour in October 2004 to review Part III of the Canada Labour Code. Part III establishes labour standards for workers employed in federally regulated enterprises. It is administered by the Labour Program of the Department of Human Resources and Social Development."
Wages in Canada: Theory, Evidence and Policy (Executive Summary only)
Morley Gunderson, University of Toronto
Posted October 11, 2006
Commission Research Program
Also from CUPE:
Productivity & Competitiveness: It’s Not the Tax Cuts that Matter…
(PDF file - 177K, 6 pages)
Quality public services deliver a more competitive economy and a better quality of life
CUPE Economic Backgrounder
Economics 101 teaches that, under certain assumptions, free and competitive markets will lead to the greatest level of good for the greatest number of people. In this model, taxes, government spending and regulation interfere with the free market and are therefore bad.
Economics 201 teaches that these assumptions are highly simplistic, heroic and unrealistic; that “market failures” are pervasive; and that there is an important role for public spending, taxes and regulation that improve the economy and increase well-being.
- Go to the
Minimum Wage /Living Wage Links page: http://www.canadiansocialresearch.net/minwage.htm
- Go to the Unions Links page: http://www.canadiansocialresearch.net/unionbkmrk.htm
New from the Childcare Resource and Research Unit - November 10
What's New - from the Childcare Resource and Research Unit (CRRU) - University of Toronto
LEARNING AND CHILD CARE: A STRATEGIC INVESTMENT
Presentation by Martha Friendly to "Building Healthy Labour Markets in Newfoundland and Labrador: A Provincial Labour Market Symposium"
LEARNING AND CHILD CARE: SETTING THE STAGE FOR LIFELONG LEARNING
Presentation by Christine McLean to Newfoundland and Labrador Provincial Labour Market Symposium.
C-303: EARLY LEARNING AND CHILD CARE ACT
Private member’s bill to "establish criteria and conditions in respect to funding for early learning and child care programs" will face second reading and a vote on November 22nd.
CARE SERVICES: INVESTING IN A SUSTAINABLE FUTURE FOR BC
Budget Submission from the Human Early Learning Partnership (UBC) to the 2007 to the Select Standing Committee on Finance and Government Services.
Child Care in the News
and education feel the pressure in Fort McMurray [CA-AB]
Calgary Herald, 10 Nov 06
eyes limits on Ottawa's powers [CA]
Toronto Star, 10 Nov 06
Learning Centres throws its toys [AU]
The Age, 8 Nov 06
for more free child care places [GB]
Manchester Evening News, 8 Nov 06
boom looms in Calgary [CA-AB]
CBC News, 6 Nov 06
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
Childcare Resource and Research Unit (CRRU) - University of Toronto
Go to the Non-Governmental Early Learning and Child Care Links page: http://www.canadiansocialresearch.net/ecd2.htm
- Go to the International Children, Families and Youth Links page: http://www.canadiansocialresearch.net/chn2.htm
|7. Poverty Dispatch:
U.S. media coverage of social issues and programs
- links to news items from the American press about poverty, welfare reform, child welfare, education, health, hunger, Medicare and Medicaid, etc.
NOTE: this is a link to the current issue --- its content changes twice a week.
- links to two dispatches a week back to June 1 (2006) when the Dispatch acquired its own web page and archive.
Digest Archive - weekly digest of dispatches from August 2005 to May 2006
For a few years prior to the creation of this new web page for the Dispatch, I was compiling a weekly digest of the e-mails and redistributing the digest to my mailing list with IRP's permission.
This is my own archive of weekly issues of the digest back to August 2005, and most of them have 50+ links per issue. I'll be deleting this archive from my site gradually, as the links to older articles expire.
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
Development Report 2006 - November
Development Report 2006
Beyond scarcity: Power, poverty and the global water crisis
November 9, 2006
"(...) In the early 21st Century, prospects for human development are threatened by a deepening global water crisis. Debunking the myth that the crisis is the result of scarcity, this report argues poverty, power and inequality are at the heart of the problem."
- incl. links to : The Report * Chapter Summaries * Statistics * Press Kit * HDR in the News * Videos
of contents - incl. links to a PDF file for each of the six chapters in
the report, plus all related papers
Complete report (PDF file - 7.9MB, 440 pages)
Summary (PDF file - 1.7MB, 52 pages)
Background papers, thematic papers and issue notes - links to 60 papers on power, poverty and water in the world
Country Factsheets - Canada
"The gender-related development index (GDI), introduced in Human Development Report 1995, measures achievements in the same dimensions using the same indicators as the HDI but captures inequalities in achievement between women and men."
- when considering GDI as % of HDI, Canada ranks 18th out of 177 countries.
United Nations Development Programme (UNDP)
to No. 6 in UN development ranking
Norway tops list, followed by Iceland, Australia, Ireland and Sweden
November 9, 2006
Canada has dropped to No. 6 on the UN Human Development Index, which ranks 177 countries each year in terms of health, education, life expectancy, income, poverty levels and environmental quality. Canada held the top spot on the list from 1992 until 2001, when it dropped to No. 3. It took fifth place in 2005.
- Go to the United Nations Links page: http://www.canadiansocialresearch.net/un.htm
9. Spread the Net campaign (Montreal Millennium Promise Conference) - November 9
initiative launched at poverty conference
November 09, 2006
Amid the staggering data on child poverty and disease reeled off at the Montreal Millennium Promise Conference, one Canadian aid initiative stood out for its simplicity: $10 bednets to prevent the spread of potentially deadly malaria in Africa. Belinda Stronach, MP for Newmarket-Aurora, satirist Rick Mercer, and UNICEF Canada launched the Spread the Net campaign on Thursday at the day-long child poverty conference at the Palais des Congrès.
the Net Campaign - Bednets Against Malaria
The goal: to cover Africa in blue bednets and stop death by malaria.
Who is Spread the Net?
It’s your friends, your gang, your posse, your colleagues, your brother, your aunt, your rival, your girlfriend, your teacher, your idol.
It’s Belinda Stronach and Rick Mercer; national co-chairs stepping up to the plate and spearheading this amazing cause.
It’s Unicef Canada.
It’s all Canadians.
It’s children in Africa.
NOTE: Belinda has two web design firms responsible for her website.
Because she's co-chair of the Millennium Promise Conference, you'd think that someone would have ensured that Millennium would be spelled correctly, including the double "n".
The word is misspelled several times on her home page and her Millennium Promise Conference page.
Rick Mercer Report
UN Millennium Project
UN Millennium Goals
Millennium Promise Conference Website
November 9 (9am-5pm) - Montreal
- Go to the Social Research Links in Other Countries (Non-Government) page: http://www.canadiansocialresearch.net/internatngo.htm
10. Two conferences:
Global Microcredit Summit
November 12-15, 2006
World Trade and Convention Centre
"On November 12, 2006, 2,000 delegates from more than 100 countries will gather in Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada for the Global Microcredit Summit, to assess progress toward the Summit’s goal of reaching 100 million poorest families, and to launch the second phase of the Campaign with two new goals.
- incl links to : Genral Information - Program - Registration - Accommodations - Travel to Halifax - Associated Sessions - Exhibiting - Volunteers - Summit Materials - Summit 2006 Sponsors
Forum 2006 - Future Directions in Child Care
November 19 – 22, 2006 in Vancouver, BC
This international conference will explore and share knowledge, information, data and on promising practices and innovative approaches to prevention and response to child abuse and neglect.
- Go to the Conferences and Events Links page: http://www.canadiansocialresearch.net/confer.htm
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