While Canada is among the wealthiest and most economically successful countries on the planet, the residents here aren't always as fortunate with many experiencing poverty in Canada.
According to a new report by Citizens For Public Justice, millions of Canadians are considered low income and living in poverty.
Although Canada has had a history of poverty-related problems, the pandemic has made existing issues even more apparent as inequity and hardships continue to rain down hard on Canadians, either by contracting the virus, losing jobs and limited access to services and supports.
What does poverty look like in Canada?
According to the report, 4.4 million people, which includes more than 1.2 million children under 18, live in food-insecure households. These figures are from 2017- 2018.
In addition, 3.2 million people in Canada were considered “low income” and living in poverty in 2018.
This means that they were unable to afford the most basic cost standard of living which includes shelter, food, clothing, transportation, and other basic necessities, according to Canada’s official poverty line and the Market Basket Measure (MBM).
Even more, according to the Low-Income Measure (LIM), which uses taxes to estimate poverty rates, an estimated 5.9 million people in Canada were living in poverty that same year.
Keep in mind that this estimate does is not inclusive of those living in the territories, on reserves, or other remote communities where "disproportionately high rates" of poverty exist.
The LIM estimates that 5.9 million people in Canada (or 16.5%) were living in poverty in 2018. Because of gaps in t… https://t.co/NalrU742Vc— Citizens for Public Justice (@Citizens for Public Justice)1602163297.0
Which regions are hit the hardest?
Although every province and territory in Canada has seen some level of poverty, two have been hit the hardest: Manitoba and Nunavut.
Both regions have the highest rates based on census metropolitan areas and non-CMA regions in the year of 2018.
Based on the report's graphs, 27.7% was the rate of poverty in non-CMA Manitoba and 27.3% in Nunavut.
Both figures were greater than the national rate.
Also in Nunavut, 57% of households were food insecure, while 21.6% were in the Northwest Territories, and 16.9% in the Yukon.
What groups are most affected?
Per the report, the people the most affected by poverty in Canada are Indigenous peoples who live on reserves and in remote areas.
In the case of Nunavut, the report quoted that their circumstances are the direct result of colonization.
"It is the broad outcome of the troubled shift from living with self-reliance and resourcefulness on the land to being settled in permanent municipalities where dependency on a money-based economy and assistance from outside the community could not be avoided," the report reads.
Other groups who are more affected include single people, immigrants, women and those with disabilities.
African-born immigrants have the lowest employment rate and the highest unemployment rate of all immigrant groups, according to the report.
The graph also shows that single people, 34.7%, and single parents, 35.5%, make up a large portion of poverty rates too.
One in four single-mother households was food insecure in 2017-2018.