Poverty and Affluence in Canada
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Poverty and Affluence in Canada. Historically there has always been a gap between rich and poor. Most sociologists held that this inequality exists in all societies and it must be part of human structure.

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Poverty and Affluence in Canada

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Poverty and affluence in canada

Poverty and Affluence in Canada

Historically there has always been a gap between rich and poor

Most sociologists held that this inequality exists in all societies and it must be part of human structure

By the 1970s this gap became larger due to increased gas prices and the rise of unemployment due to globalization and free trade

Sociologist discovered that there are some groups that are consistently at a disadvantage


Poverty and affluence in canada

Poverty and Affluence in Canada

Defining Poverty in Canada

-Low-income cut off line (LICO)

-On average Canadians spend 36% of their after tax income on basic necessities such as food, shelter and clothing

-Statistics Canada adds 20% more to that figure making 56%


Poverty and affluence in canada

Poverty and Affluence in Canada

Meaning that if you are spending more than 56% of your income on basic necessities than you are below the poverty line

There are more groups that are more likely to experience poverty such as lone parent households, unattached individuals, people over 65. Females experience a high incidence of living below the LICO than men do in all categories, Why?


Poverty and affluence in canada

Poverty and Affluence in Canada

Gap between Men and Women

-number of single earner families headed by women with low incomes is high

-unattached employed women earned on average $31 388 compared to men at $47 077 in 1998

-There is not one answer for this gap but could be due to work experience, education, major of study, occupation, being promoted etc


Poverty and affluence in canada

Poverty and Affluence in Canada

Reducing the Inequalities

-Programs have been developed to reduce inequalities such as employment and training programs to affirmative action hiring practices.

Are these programs fair? What is an alternative to breaking the income gap?


Poverty and affluence in canada

Poverty and Affluence in Canada

Reducing the Inequalities

-What about groups that are not able to earn money such as mentally ill, physically incapable, woman with a large family responsibility with no support (husband)?

What should society do regarding these groups that are unable to earn money or very little?


Poverty and affluence in canada

Poverty and Affluence in Canada

Welfare in Ontario

In 1995 the government reduced welfare payments by 21.6% believing that payments were too high and that they were creating a disincentive: that discourages some recipients from finding employment. What do you think? Is it that simple?

Some people may believe that welfare recipients (the more powerless in society) were often the target of cuts even if they didn’t make sense


Poverty and affluence in canada

Poverty and Affluence in Canada

Pluralism in Canada

Pluralism/inclusiveness: Widespread acceptance of differences in culture, religion, values and lifestyle

Singularity: Believe that everyone should act and think the same way. Example Iran was pluralistic in the 70s now singular


Poverty and affluence in canada

Poverty and Affluence in Canada

Making Gains

-Discrimination in the workplace often results from systemic discrimination: whereby a system exists that favours one or some groups over others in terms of hiring, benefits, promotions and pay increases. Usually racial minorities, Aboriginal people, physically or mentally challenged people continue to encounter barriers

-Women workplace participation has climbed from 38% (1970) to 57.6% (1992) due to higher education, shifting attitudes, smaller families, higher divorce rates etc


Poverty and affluence in canada

Poverty and Affluence in Canada

Employment Equity Act – 1986

All employers at the federal level (armed forces, health care, postal service) must tackle systemic discrimination. The four groups are women, Aboriginal people, members of visible minorities and people with mental or physical disabilities

-This Act requires employers to develop policies to provide the target group with workplace equity by setting hiring goals for each target group


Poverty and affluence in canada

Poverty and Affluence in Canada

Employment Equity Act – 1986

-Another part of the EEE was Equal pay for work of equal value: job classifications must be compared for the skills they require and the responsibilities they involve, their working conditions and the effort required, these must be paid at the same rates.

-For example secretaries (mainly women) versus warehouse workers (mainly men), warehouse workers would get paid more but both jobs are equally valued. This is hard to prove and sometimes the government will pay out workers to avoid legal fees.


Poverty and affluence in canada

Poverty and Affluence in Canada


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