Listen Live

HomeNews2,700 children in Prince George were living in poverty in 2021

2,700 children in Prince George were living in poverty in 2021

The First Call Child and Youth Advocacy Society is recommending that BC’s minimum wage jumps to $20/an hour by 2026.

This comes as the number of children living in poverty in Prince George is on the rise. In its report card, 2,690 children were living in poverty in our city in 2021, up from 2,400 in 2020.

The child poverty rate in PG (Prince George) is 14.4%, on par with provincial rate (14.3).

Executive Director, Adrienne Montani says poverty rates in a city like PG varies, depending on where you live.

- Advertisement -

“The inequity rates that we see right across the province between regional districts and such in cities like Prince George where there are census tracts where there are poverty rates of just 7% but there are some with 45 or 46% poverty rates and that is particularly in the downtown area.”

21 out of the 29 regional districts in BC had at least one thousand children living in poverty.

The Regional District of Fraser Fort-George’s poverty rate stands at 14.6%.

The Skeena-Queen Charlotte regional district was one of four in BC that had more than one in five children living in poverty in 2021with a rate of 24.4%.

Montani believes that pushing the minimum wage to the $20 threshold will allow more families the opportunity to get above the poverty line.

“Most poor children live with two parents in the workforce. Their parents need either in order to lift themselves out of poverty is either more work, because they are only able to work part time or have temporary or sporadic work or they need better wages or a combination of both of those things.”

“We are not interested in bringing families just up to the poverty line but over the poverty line so that they are out of chronic financial stress and can afford a decent life with dignity and their children have the opportunities that other children have.”

Three years ago, one in seven children or 126,120 youth in BC lived in poverty.

However, on-reserve child poverty rates are twice as high compared to their urban counterparts.

Of the 67 BC First Nations that reserves that took part in the survey, the child poverty rate was 31%.

In addition, the child poverty rate for those in lone-parent families in BC is 40.4%, slightly lower than the national mark of 41.3%.

Furthermore, 80% of lone-parent families were female-led. These families’ median before tax annual income was $55,140.

“What we are concerned about is that we learned the lesson during 2020 when there were lots of pandemic or CERB income supports coming to families. Some of them were still coming in 2021 – the data in this report but we can see the withdrawal from a bunch of those funds made some poverty rates go back up,” said Montani.

She adds the richest 10% of families with children in BC make 25 times what the poorest 10% earn.

The all-ages poverty rate in Prince George is 12.6%.

A link to the fill report can be found here.

- Advertisment -
- Advertisment -
- Advertisement -

Continue Reading