(Libreshot.com)

(Libreshot.com)

Wealth tax could fund $20B in aid, child care for 1.3M impoverished Canadian kids: report

Indigenous children experienced higher than average rates of child poverty

At least 1.3 million Canadian children were living in poverty prior to the pandemic, and that number has likely only increased, according a report released by Campaign 2000.

The organization’s Report Card on Child and Family Poverty in Canada estimates that prior to COVID-19, one in five children were living in poverty.

“Never before have these inequities been so apparent and the need to close gaps so dire,” the report said.

“First Nations, Inuit, Métis, racialized, immigrant children, children with disabilities and children in female led lone parent families are all overrepresented in rates of poverty, while income and wealth continues to concentrate at the top.”

The report found that the national child poverty rate dropped by less than half a percentage point between 2017 and 2018. It grew in some provinces and territories, including Nunavut, Nova Scotia and Manitoba, and dropped “modestly” in others, including British Columbia, Quebec and Ontario.

The report made a series of recommendations, including improving access to federal aid for families who may have trouble accessing. It noted that the Canada Child Benefit “made an important difference” when it was introduced in 2016 but that the improvement has not remained.

Child care was another issue identified. The report stated that there are regulated childcare centre spaces for just short of 29 per cent of children up to five years old, a problem that can disproportionally affect single-parent households.

Some groups were more marginalized than others, according to the report. It found that among First Nations children who are status, 53 per cent of on-reserve First Nations children and 41 per cent of those who live off-reserve lived in poverty. In First Nations children without status cards, the poverty rate is 31 per cent. Poverty rates for Inuit and Metis children are at 25 and 22 per cent, respectively.

“The federal government has a fiscal responsibility to First Nations communities through treaties and the Indian Act but funding falls significantly short from what other Canadians receive,” the report stated. “Lack of culturally appropriate, accessible and locally delivered services remain a barrier for First Nations, Inuit and Métis peoples living in urban and rural communities.”

The report recommends paying “full compensation to the First Nations children, parents and grandparents who were harmed by inequitable funding for child welfare services on reserve .”

Branching out to overall child poverty, the report made several funding recommendations to improve income inequality. The report called for a tax of one per cent on wealth over $10 million, two per cent on wealth over $100 million and three per cent on wealth over $1 billion, stating this could generate nearly $20 billion each year. Further, the report called for the government to create an inheritance tax of 45 per cent, just above the U.S.’s current tax of 40 per cent, as well as reduce preferential tax rates on capital gains and investments and close tax havens, changes it said would bring in $34 billion in savings and new funding.

Looking at the impact of COVID-19, the report recommended an “excess profit tax” that would focus on companies that made extraordinary profits during, and due to, the pandemic.


@katslepian

katya.slepian@bpdigital.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Want to support local journalism during the pandemic? Make a donation here.

Child welfarePoverty

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

The school is very proud of these students (pictured, left to right): Halim Demir (holding Grace Valdez’ gold certificate); Lauren McIlwain, Shayleen Mack, Jaymen Schieck, Kyle Doiron, and Finn Carlson (photo submitted)
SAMS students excel in international competition

The SAMS team swept their category this year; all six participants received awards

FILE – A COVID-19 vaccine being prepared. (Olivia Sullivan/Sound Publishing)
B.C. seniors 80 years and older to get COVID vaccine details over next 2 weeks: Henry

Province is expanding vaccine workforce as officials ramp up age-based rollout

The avalanche came down on the highway sometime Sunday evening (Feb. 21) (Dawson photo)
Road to Bella Coola wharf reopens after large avalanche

The road was closed after a large avalanche covered a significant portion of the highway

Jenni Mueller lives near the wharf on the other side of the avalanche. She took this photo and thinks the avalanche happened around 8 p.m. last night (February 21). (Jenni Mueller photo)
Avalanche closes road to wharf at Bella Coola

A day and night of heavy rain resulted in avalanches across the region

Fisheries and Oceans Canada released it's 2021 Pacific Herring Integrated Fisheries Management Plan Feb. 19. (File photo)
Northern herring opportunities kept to a minimum

2021 management plan caps Prince Rupert fishery at 5 per cent

Abbotsford’s Kris Collins turned to TikTok out of boredom when the provincial COVID-19 lockdown began in March 2020. She now has over 23 million followers on the video app. Photo: Submitted
Internet famous: Abbotsford’s Kris Collins is a TikTok comedy queen

Collins has found surprise stardom alone with a phone

Nanaimo children’s author and illustrator Lindsay Ford’s latest book is ‘Science Girl.’ (Photo courtesy Lindsay Ford)
B.C. children’s writer encourages girls to pursue the sciences in new book

Lindsay Ford is holding a virtual launch for latest book, ‘Science Girl’

Pig races at the 145th annual Chilliwack Fair on Aug. 12, 2017. Monday, March 1, 2021 is Pig Day. (Jenna Hauck/ Chilliwack Progress file)
Unofficial holidays: Here’s what people are celebrating for the week of Feb. 28 to March 6

Pig Day, Canadian Bacon Day and Grammar Day are all coming up this week

Staff from the Marine Mammal Rescue Centre, passersby, RCMP and Nanaimo Fire Rescue carried a sick 300-kilogram steller sea lion up the steep bluff at Invermere Beach in north Nanaimo in an attempt to save the animal’s life Thursday. (Photo courtesy Marine Mammal Rescue Centre)
300-kilogram sea lion muscled up from B.C. beach in rescue attempt

Animal dies despite efforts of Nanaimo marine mammal rescue team, emergency personnel and bystanders

Doctors and counsellors warn of an increase in panic attacks, anxiety, depression and suicide ideas between ages 10 to 14, in Campbell River. ( Black Press file photo)
Extended pandemic feeding the anxieties of B.C.’s youth

Parents not sure what to do, urged to reach out for help

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Kara Sorensen, diagnosed with lung cancer in July, says it’s important for people to view her as healthy and vibrant, rather than sick. (Photo courtesy of Karen Sorensen)
B.C. woman must seek treatment overseas for inoperable lung cancer

Fundraising page launched on Karen Sorensen’s behalf, with a goal of $250,000

Gina Adams as she works on her latest piece titled ‘Undying Love’. (Submitted photo)
‘Toothless’ the kitty inspires B.C. wood carver to break out the chainsaw

Inspired by plight of a toothless cat, Gina Adams offers proceeds from her artwork to help animals

B.C. Finance Minister Selina Robinson presents bill to delay B.C.’s budget as late as April 30, and allow further spending before that, B.C. legislature, Dec. 8, 2020. (Hansard TV)
How big is B.C.’s COVID-19 deficit? We’ll find out April 20

More borrowing expected as pandemic enters second year

Most Read