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Over 3 million people in Canada are now living in poverty

Over 3.2 million people in Canada are living below the poverty line, according to a recent study by Statistics Canada.

The agency used 2018 income tax returns to determine the number of Canadians that are currently not meeting the Market Basket Measure— a metaphorical basket of food, clothes and services representing a modest style of living.

Still, Canada’s poverty rate is improving; in 2017, the national poverty rate was 9.5 per cent; a year later, that number has dropped to 8.7 per cent.

Since 2015, over one million Canadians have been lifted out of poverty: the largest three-year reduction in Canadian history. Poverty rates have decreased in all 10 provinces, with Nova Scotia experiencing the most improvement.

For Canadian children, the poverty rate is holding steady at 8.2 per cent — still significantly reduced from its spike at 15 per cent in 2012.

Trudeau’s liberal government has been keeping a close eye on the poverty rate since 2015, when it introduced its ambitious anti-poverty strategy that seeks to reduce poverty by 50 per cent.

Minister of Families, Children and Social Development Ahmed Hussen said, “The results of the 2018 Canadian Income Survey are further proof that our plan is working.”

“However, we know there is much more to do. That is why we will keep working hard to reduce poverty and make sure that every Canadian has a real and fair chance to succeed.”

Statistics Canada plans to introduce a new formula for calculating the Market Basket Measure, which will increase the poverty rate from 8.2 per cent to 11 per cent in 2018.

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