Before sunrise, the United Church minister Al Tysick (of the Dandelion Society) drives through downtown Victoria, BC, greeting the city’s street community. He welcomes them with hot coffee, breakfast, and necessities such as clean socks. 

Doreen Kot and the people of Parkdale United Church support Acadia Place, a KAIROS Calgary initiative that rehouses and helps homeless families.

Through their Bread not Stones initiative, United Church Women (UCW) advocate for structural changes to end child poverty in Canada.

Those who respond to poverty on the front lines can observe that Canada’s systems of care are failing. One in seven Canadians (4.9 million total) currently struggle to pay rent, feed their families, and supply their basic needs.

Now is a key moment to augment the calls of our partners for faith and justice. Until June 30, 2017, the federal government is consulting Canadians to shape a national Poverty Reduction Strategy. As people of faith, we care for those living in poverty and challenge our systems to support all of us in dignified ways.

Take Action

Your input can help shape a new strategy for a Canada without poverty.

  1. Review the Dignity for All plan and use their form to write to Employment and Social Development Canada and share what you want to see in the Poverty Reduction Strategy. You can use the Dignity for All recommendations as a starting point.
  2. Let the federal government know what is important to you when it comes to ending poverty in Canada. Contribute to the Poverty Reduction Strategy consultations by
  3. Follow news of the consultation on social media and join the discussion on Twitter to #ReducePoverty!
  4. Attend a public roundtable related to the Poverty Reduction Strategy consultations in your area or host your own community discussion on the subject. A toolkit to help you plan a community discussion is available for download on the Employment and Social Development Canada site.

Background

In Levitus, farmers are told, “When you reap the harvest of your land, you shall not reap to the very edges of your field... you shall leave them for the poor and for the alien” (23:22). However, leaving scraps is not enough. The United Church believes that as we lead lives of compassion and justice, “the poor must have priority… over the wants of the rich.” (Search “The Church and the Economic Crisis” on United Church Commons.)

United Church partner Canada without Poverty has called for the federal government to create a comprehensive plan to eliminate poverty (such as their Dignity for All plan) since 2012. 

For more background on this issue, refer to the following:

For more information, contact:

Jordan SullivanMinistry Partnership Animator/Program Assist416-231-7680 ext. 4151
1-800-268-3781 ext. 4151
jsullivan [at] united-church.ca
Beth BaskinProgram Coordinator, Social Analysis & Congregational Engagement416-231-7680 ext. 4196
1-800-268-3781 ext. 4196
bbaskin [at] united-church.ca