Tag: Poverty

Data reveal pandemic’s mixed impact on incomes and poverty in Nova Scotia

The Canadian Income Survey (CIS) for 2021 released last week by Statistics Canada was probably predictable. After the unprecedented deluge of COVID-19 benefits from government raised household incomes and cut poverty rates in 2020, the CIS reported that the reduced flow of the mainly federal dollars led to a small drop in Canadians’ incomes and an increase in poverty in 2021. However, there was one surprise – Nova Scotia bucked at least part of the trend. Median after tax income for Canadian families and unattached individuals dropped from $69,000 in 2020 to $68,400 in 2021 while the percentage of...

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Poverty and elections: the elephant in the room stirs

It came up only briefly but the subject of Nova Scotians’ lagging family incomes produced one of the livelier exchanges in last week’s leaders’ debate. Responding to a question about plans for the post-pandemic recovery, Iain Rankin recited the familiar pre-pandemic catalogue of Liberal talking points on the economy. He mentioned growth in population, exports, tourism and employment, proof in his view that the Liberal government was “on the right track before the pandemic hit and we need to get back to that.” “Right track,” interjected an incredulous Gary Burrill. “The truth is that we had going into the...

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The old normal: Good news and bad on poverty and incomes

Economic fallout from the pandemic may change things, but the latest Statistics Canada data on income and poverty levels in Nova Scotia run according to form, with one major exception. The Canadian Income Survey (CIS) for 2019 shows a further drop in the province’s child poverty rate – a steep one. As described here, child poverty became a political embarrassment for the McNeil Liberals two years ago when the CIS revealed that while child poverty rates across the country were falling, they went up in Nova Scotia in 2017. The stigma eased a bit last year when the CIS...

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Election 2019: Fact checking the fact checkers

Monday night’s English-language leaders’ debate produced a fresh flurry of media fact checking, a worthwhile effort to separate the credible wheat from the rhetorical chaff. Within the mainstream media, CBC has “Fact Check”, CTV “Truth Tracker”, Global has its “Reality Check” and the Canadian Press “Baloney Meter.” Some of the work is quite straightforward, such as the CBC’s exposure of the lies the Conservatives are spreading about a Liberal plan to hit Canadians with the capital gains tax when they sell their homes. Andrew Scheer’s distortions about Canada’s foreign aid payments also registered high on CP’s Baloney Meter. Some...

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Updated income numbers change the poverty story

A few months ago the McNeil government’s reputation took a hit with news that while child poverty was dropping across Canada it was on the rise in Nova Scotia.The source of the disclosure was Stats Canada’s Canadian Income Survey (CIS) for 2017. As reported here, the release was given wide publicity by the federal Liberals as proof that their anti-poverty measures are working. But sadly, although the Canadian rate of child poverty purportedly dropped from 11 to nine per cent between 2016 and 2017, it jumped from 14 per cent to 17.1 per cent in Nova Scotia. The February...

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Richard Starr, The man behind the Point

About Richard

RICHARD STARR has had careers as a journalist, public servant, broadcaster, political staffer and freelance policy adviser. He is author of numerous newspaper and magazine articles, a former radio and TV producer and weekly newspaper editor, and the author of three non-fiction books. Starr has lived in Dartmouth for more than 30 years.

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