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So much patience and hope, so little momentum

Last December, Deb Matthews, chief architect of Ontario’s poverty reduction strategy, announced that the government would launch a review of its rigid and restrictive social assistance rules. To outsiders, it sounded like bureaucratic housekeeping. But to people living on welfare, it was a breakthrough. ‘This ends more than a decade of poor bashing, of deliberate and callous targeting of those in living in poverty,’ said Pat Capponi of Voices from the Street, which encourages the poor and homeless to speak…

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ODSP Action Coalition – MPP Lobby Kit

The ODSP Action Coalition has created a lobby kit for advocates to use in meetings with their MPPs on the Social Assistance Review. The Coalition is a provincial group advocating for people with disabilities on ODSP and considers the Social Assistance Review the most important opportunity in decades to improve ODSP so that people with disabilities can live with dignity. Unfortunately, the Coalition is increasingly worried that any restructuring that comes out of the review will be more about reducing…

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What Next in Welfare Reform?

Recent years have seen a new consensus emerge around welfare reforms. As a result a number of promising programs and practices have been adopted in various jurisdictions which have shifted policy design and delivery beyond work-first. Instead of a simplistic focus upon the “shortest route to employment”, the new emphasis has recognized that large numbers have been left behind by such strategies and is focusing instead on identifying and meeting needs and supporting sustainable transitions into work. This report highlights a…

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