After a decade of BC Liberal inaction, it is time our province developed a comprehensive strategy to combat poverty and reverse B.C.’s shameful record on child poverty, the highest in Canada for the past seven years.
- Appointing a cabinet minister with the authority and responsibility to set and achieve legislated poverty reduction targets.
- Raising the minimum wage to $10.00 an hour and index it to cost of living increases and eliminating the $6 an hour training wage.
- Expanding child care and early learning programs so all children get the same advantages to succeed in school.
- Reducing homelessness with firm action targets for new units of social housing and better supports of short-term shelters, funded by the province’s housing trust and reporting to the Legislature annually.
- Reviewing categories of Income Assistance rates within the context of the poverty reduction plan and immediately linking current rates to inflation.
- Lowering barriers to post- secondary education, apprenticeships, and training programs for families living in poverty.
- Restoring supports to single parent families, increasing Income Assistance-to- Work supports and earning exemption allowances to help transition people from welfare to work.
- Protecting children-at-risk through immediate investments in child protection services and enhancing support for the transition to First Nations’ aboriginal child welfare.
- Reducing Community Living waitlists, to help some of BC’s most vulnerable adults and their families get adequate care.