Canadian Poverty Reduction Strategy
On August 21, 2018, the Government of Canada released the report: Opportunity for All: Canada’s First Poverty Reduction Strategy. A bold vision to build a Canada where every Canadian has a real and fair chance at success, a Canada without poverty.
The strategy based its results on extensive consultations with Canadians across the country. It introduces:
- concrete poverty reduction targets (relative to 2015 levels):
- a 20% reduction in poverty by 2020
- a 50% reduction in poverty by 2030
- Canada’s Official Poverty Line to measure poverty and track progress towards the targets
- a National Advisory Council on Poverty
Government investments that support poverty reduction
The Poverty Reduction Strategy brings together investments that the Government has already made in the social and economic well-being of Canadians since 2015. It builds on the Government of Canada’s existing programs, such as:
- Canada Child Benefit: a tax-free monthly payment that helps low- to middle-income families with the cost of raising children
- Canada Workers Benefit: a refundable tax credit that helps supplement the earnings of low-income workers
- Increase to the Guaranteed Income Supplement top-up benefit: it is helping to improve the financial security of close to 900,000 vulnerable seniors
- Canada’s first National Housing Strategy: a 10-year plan to give more Canadians a place to call home
For the complete list of government investments, please consult Annex 2: List of government initiatives that support poverty reduction.
Every Canadian deserves a real and fair chance to succeed, no matter where they live or where they come from.
Creating the National Advisory Council on Poverty
The National Advisory Council on Poverty is a group of 10 members, including persons with lived experience. They are also community leaders, academics, and practitioners who work in the field of poverty reduction. The Council provides advice to the Government of Canada on poverty reduction.
It will publicly report each year on poverty reduction in Canada.
Introducing poverty indicators
The Poverty Reduction Strategy introduced 12 indicators to track progress on many aspects of poverty, including:
- food insecurity
- core housing needs
- share of youth in employment, education or training
Canadians can track progress on these indicators through the Dimensions of Poverty Hub.
Canada’s Official Poverty Line
Statistics Canada and Employment and Social Development Canada are currently reviewing Canada’s Official Poverty Line (Market Basket Measure). This review will ensure the measure remains up-to-date and continues to reflect a current standard of living.
There are 4 reports as part of the review:
- An update on the Market Basket Measure comprehensive review summarizes the feedback from the consultations held between September 2018 and April 2019
- Towards an update of the Market Basket describes the proposed changes to the 5 components of the Market Basket Measure. It suggests new ways to calculate them
- Defining disposable income in the Market Basket Measure describes the proposed changes to the disposable income concept used in the Market Basket Measure
- The Report on the second comprehensive review of the Market Basket Measure describes the proposed changes to the Market Basket Measure
What we are doing
- Report on the second comprehensive review of the Market Basket Measure (February 2020)
- Defining disposable income in the Market Basket Measure (December 2019)
- Towards an update of the Market Basket (December 2019)
- Canada’s Poverty Reduction Strategy: An Update (August 2019)
- An update on the Market Basket Measure comprehensive review (July 2019)
- Opportunity for All: Canada’s First Poverty Reduction Strategy (August 2018)
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