(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

Interior Health update. File photo.
86 new COVID-19 cases, two more deaths in Interior Health

The new deaths are from Heritage Square, a long-term care facility in Vernon

Sickle Point as seen from the air. (Kaleden Community Association - David Mai)
Second town hall for Sickle Point on Jan. 27

The first town hall was cut short due to technical issues

Nate Brown photo
Okanagan-Shuswap says goodbye sunshine, hello winter

Temperatures are forecasted to drop by mid-next week

The facility in Summerland has 112 long-term care beds. Interior Health funds 75 of the beds. (John Arendt - Summerland Review)
Six more months for temporary Summerland Seniors Village adminstrator

The temporary administrator was appointed following site visits and concerns from Interior Health

President Donald Trump speaks to the media before boarding Marine One on the South Lawn of the White House, Tuesday, Jan. 12, 2021 in Washington. The President is traveling to Texas. (AP Photo/Gerald Herbert)
Black Press Weekly Roundup: Top headlines this week

In case you missed it, here’s what made waves throughout the week

Seasonal influenza vaccine is administered starting each fall in B.C. and around the world. (Langley Advance Times)
After 30,000 tests, influenza virually nowhere to be found in B.C.

COVID-19 precautions have eliminated seasonal infection

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau listens to a question during a news conference outside Rideau cottage in Ottawa, Friday, January 8, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Trudeau says Canada’s COVID vaccine plan on track despite Pfizer cutting back deliveries

Canadian officials say country will still likely receive four million doses by the end of March

Jobs Minister Ravi Kahlon shared a handwritten note his son received on Jan. 13, 2021. (Ravi Kahlon/Twitter)
Proud dad moment: B.C. minister’s son, 10, receives handwritten note for act of kindness

North Delta MLA took to Twitter to share a letter his son received from a new kid at school

Lilly and Poppy, two cats owned by Kalmar Cat Hotel ownder Donna Goodenough, both have cerebellAr hypoplasia, a genetic neurological condition that affects their ability to control their muscles and bones. Photo by Alistair Taylor – Campbell River Mirror
VIDEO: Wobbly Cats a riot of flailing legs and paws but bundles of love and joy to their owner

Woman urges others to not fear adopting cats with disabilities

A COVID-19 outbreak at Vernon's Heritage Square long-term care home has claimed seven people. (Jennifer Smith - Morning Star)
Two more COVID-19 deaths at Vernon care home

Heritage Square has now lost seven people due to the outbreak

Chief public health officer Dr. Theresa Tam provides an update on the COVID-19 pandemic in Ottawa on Friday, Jan. 8, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
Canada’s top doctor says to avoid non-essential travel as B.C. explores legal options

Premier John Horgan says he is seeking legal advice on whether it can limit interprovincial travel

(Big White Ski Resort photo)
13 more cases of COVID-19 tied to Big White Mountain cluster

This brings the total case count to 175, of which 32 cases are active

RCMP on scene at a home on Sylvania Cres. (Phil McLachlan /Capital News/FILE)
Two Kelowna men arrested after Rutland home invasion

Two Kelowna men, including a prolific offender, facing slew of potential charges

Most Read