CUTS TO NATIONAL COUNCIL OF WELFARE WILL HURT LOW-INCOME CANADIANS

Ottawa – Funding for the National Council of Welfare eliminated in last week’s federal budget is an example of the Conservative preference to govern by opinion that runs counter to statistics and facts according to Carol Hughes.

The government advisory body, the premier resource for information on poverty in Canada, saw all of its grants pulled as a result of cuts inflicted by the Conservative government to Human Resources and Skills Development Canada.

“Just like the long-form census, the National Council of Welfare provided credible data on poverty rates and now the Conservatives have gutted the funding for the organization, effectively shutting it down,” said Carol Hughes, MP for Algoma-Manitoulin and vice-chair of the Standing Committee on Human Resources, Skills and Social Development and the Status of Persons with Disabilities.

“The Council’s most recent report, The Dollars and Sense of Solving Poverty, laid out a credible case for why investing in poverty reduction actually saved money in the long-term. Instead of taking that information and making the necessary investments, the Conservatives chose to shut the organization down.”

Established in 1969 as a government advisory body, the National Council of Welfare has advised the minister about social policy issues and provided a means for Canadians, especially those with low-income, to make their views known to government. As of 2013-2014, the Council will receive no more funding.

“Instead of solving the problem of poverty, the Conservatives are turning a blind eye, refusing to do anything about it,” Hughes said in Question Period today. “Most recently, the Council advised that it would take less money to solve poverty than the government is spending to manage the symptoms.”

“This is another example of this Conservative government choosing corporate tax cuts over investments in our social services.  Canadians deserve better,” said Hughes.

 

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For more information, please contact: Jamie Burgess, Office of Carol Hughes 613-996-5376 , hughec.a1@parl.gc.ca