Toronto Remains the Child Poverty Capital of Canada

Toronto Remains the Child Poverty Capital of Canada

 A new report from Social Planning Toronto and partners shows that, amongst large Canadian cities, Toronto continues to have the highest percentage of children and youth living in poverty.

Key findings from the attached report, which is based on recently released Statistics Canada Taxfiler data for 2013: available here

Child poverty in Toronto in 2013 remained virtually unchanged from the previous year, with more than 1 in 4 children (29%), or 144,000 in total, living in low-income households in 2013 (as measured by Low Income Measure After Tax).

  • Children in some Toronto neighbourhoods are up to 10 times more likely to live in poverty (the child poverty rate is over 50% in Regent Park, Moss Park, Oakridge and Thorncliffe Park, while it is less than 5% in Lawrence Park North and Kingsway South).
  • Children are the age-group most at risk of poverty: 29% of Toronto children live in poverty, compared to 24% of working age adults and 10% of seniors.
  • As reported in last year’s “Hidden Epidemic” report, children of colour, Indigenous children, children from single-parent and/or newcomer families, and children with disabilities are more likely to experience poverty in Toronto.
  • Individuals and families of non-European backgrounds are up to 3 times more likely to be living on low-incomes).

This fall, Toronto City Council will vote on the adoption of a comprehensive poverty reduction strategy.

The Canada-high child and family poverty rates reported here underscore the need for a strategy that includes clear targets and timelines, strong action, and significant investments starting in the 2016 budget.


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