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About the project
TogetherBC: B.C.’s Poverty Reduction Strategy, released in 2019 and TogetherBC outlined an ambitious, cross-government approach to poverty reduction guided by four principles:
- Social inclusion
TogetherBC has led to significant progress in key areas such as income support, housing, child care, and support for families, among others. While considerable progress has been made, poverty still affects too many people.
Some groups of people face higher rates of poverty, including:
- Indigenous people
- Single individuals
- People of colour
- People with disabilities or who face barriers
- 2SLBGTQ+ people
- Others who may face discrimination and racism
The impacts of the pandemic and the effects of inflation have been felt more deeply by people living in poverty. Our challenges are bigger now, and there is much more work to do.
Poverty Reduction Strategy Act
TogetherBC is based on a strong framework set out in the 2018 Poverty Reduction Strategy Act. It included targets to reach by 2024:
- Reduce the child poverty rate by 50 percent
- Reduce the overall poverty rate by 25 percent by 2024.
B.C. met these targets in 2019. While targets were further exceeded in 2020, federal and provincial COVID-19 benefits played a role in reducing poverty levels, and new challenges such as global inflation will impact our progress. Global inflation is creating additional struggles and these impacts are felt even more deeply by people living in poverty.
- How to get involved in this engagement
- TogetherBC: B.C.’s Poverty Reduction Strategy
- Annual Reports 2019 to 2021
- Poverty Reduction Strategy Act
- Public and stakeholder input from 2017/18 engagement on poverty reduction
Feedback from this engagement will support updates to TogetherBC: B.C.’s Poverty Reduction Strategy, the Poverty Reduction Strategy Act, and a review of the BC Employment and Assistance program, which provides income and disability assistance. Your input will also inform future government programs and services that reduce poverty and tackle social and economic barriers for people.
The Ministry of Social Development and Poverty Reduction recognizes extensive public consultation has already occurred on issues that directly contribute to equity and affordability challenges, including most recently Anti-Racism Data Legislation, Gig Worker Engagement, and the StrongerBC Economic Plan. We are using this feedback to draw from the wealth of information that has already been shared with government.
In addition to these legislative requirements, government has committed to Declaration Act Action Plan Action 4.15:
Incorporate Indigenous experiences and knowledge of poverty and well-being into ongoing poverty reduction efforts and the 2024 Poverty Reduction Strategy. The strategy will recognize the ongoing impacts of colonialism and include Indigenous-identified actions and progress measures.
The experience of poverty amongst Indigenous Peoples is multifaceted. The Ministry of Social Development and Poverty Reduction will take a distinctions-based approach to engage with First Nations including Modern Treaty Nations, Métis and Urban Indigenous peoples.