Act to Combat Poverty will ensure economic recovery reaches all Albertans

 

 

Yesterday, the government announced legislation that will see AISH and seniors benefits increase with the cost of living, the first increase of its kind since 2012. At a gathering today in Calgary, CUPS spoke with Community and Social Services Minister Irfan Sabir about the impact this will make on the lives of marginalized Calgarians.

  • ● The lifelong effects of Adverse Childhood Experiences often lead to people living in poverty. By reducing this stress, people receiving assistance can focus on the solutions of addressing the effects of trauma and to get out of poverty. 
  • ● In a family context, this means that families might begin to start thinking of the future.  Not only accessing crisis services but be able to pursue getting education, getting into the workforce, getting to be self-sufficient.
  • ● Taking the strain off the community and support networks that need to pick up these broken lives when the money runs out.

We applaud the government for this move, which will make life more affordable for our most vulnerable citizens. CUPS has been working with other social serving agencies to advocate for a public policy change and last month signed a letter with 13 other agencies stating:

We respectfully request that the government raise income support benefits and index them to inflation, starting in the spring of 2019. We recognize that it may require a series of incremental steps over several years for the benefit amount to meet the official poverty line. Knowing this we ask that you take the first step now – a step that would take your government closer to fulfilling its commitment to making sure all low-income Albertans can meet their needs and participate in their communities. All Albertans deserve to live a life of dignity.

The average monthly income for people at CUPS is $950 and the annual average is $11,400.  To read more about the Act to Combat Poverty and Fight for Albertans with Disabilities:

https://www.alberta.ca/release.cfm?xID=61969950DFFBC-EB3E-67D5-D2020578DC9A86F8


#ShineALight on the Numbers

● 1 in 10 Calgarians live in poverty

● 1 in 4 Canadians lives with diabetes, undiagnosed diabetes or prediabetes

● 1 in 5 Canadians experience mental illness or addiction problems each year

● 4 million people in Canada experience food insecurity

● 1 in 8 Canadian households struggle to put food on the table.

● An estimated 45% of the overall homeless population are individuals living with mental illness

● 28 – 34% of shelter users are Indigenous peoples

● 40% of Indigenous children in Canada live in poverty






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