1 in 6 children living in poverty

Roughly one in six children in the B.C. Peace are living in poverty, according to a new report issued last week.

That's 2,770 children, or about 17% of the youth population, according to the First Call: B.C. Child and Youth Advocacy Coalition, which released its 2019 child poverty report card on Tuesday, Jan. 14.

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The numbers are based on Statistics Canada data from 2017, the most recent data available, which found 163,730 children and youth across B.C. were living in poor households.

“Once again our report finds one in five children in B.C. were living in poverty in 2017,” said Adrienne Montani, the coalition's provincial co-ordinator.

“And for the first time we saw children in lone-parent families make up over half B.C.’s poor children.”

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The poverty rate for all residents living in the Peace region is 14%, compared to 18% provincially.

Though the child poverty rate here is just below the provincial average of 19%, the coalition says children are still disproportionately affected.

"Children in lone-parent families are at particular risk with child poverty rates over seven times higher than they are for children in couple-parent families," the coalition noted.

The coalition says 52% of children in lone-parent families in the Peace are living in poverty, compared to 51% provincially.

Meanwhile, 7% of children in two-parent families are living in poverty, compared to 11% provincially. 

Meanwhile, 280 children in the Northern Rockies were found to be living in poverty, for a child poverty rate rate of 24%.

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Email Managing Editor Matt Preprost at editor@ahnfsj.ca.

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