Ontario Housing Benefit would help working poor

TORONTO, Feb. 13, 2012 /CNW/ - Often forgotten by the government and society, the working poor struggle in Toronto to support their family and make a better life for themselves and their children. The paper entitled "The 'Working Poor' in the Toronto Region" released by the Metcalf Foundation show that the number of working poor in Toronto increased 42% from 2000 to 2005. The adoption and implementation of a Housing Benefit by the Ontario government would demonstrate the government's firm commitment to the eradication of poverty and hunger among the working poor.

Almost one in four people coming to a food bank in Toronto has at least one person in their household working, often part time or casual work with no benefits. Work no longer means being able to put a roof over one's head and food on the table.

"People who are working poor have few supports available to them to help make ends meet. The implementation of an Ontario Housing Benefit would be an excellent way to help the working poor pay their rent AND put food on the table" says Richard Matern, Acting Director of Research.

An Ontario Housing Benefit would be a monthly benefit for low income tenants, based on their rent and income. The benefit would pay a part of the gap between rent and 30% of income. Four provinces in Canada have already successfully implemented a similar program to help support those on low incomes. It would be paid to all people with low income having trouble affording their housing, which means this is a benefit that would help support the working poor. There is currently little housing support available for the working poor in Ontario, who are more likely to be living in private rental housing.

Support the call for an Ontario Housing Benefit. Find out more at www.dailybread.ca/learning-centre/housing-benefit/.

Daily Bread Food Bank
Daily Bread Food Bank is an independent, non-profit, charitable organization that is fighting to end hunger in our communities. As Canada's largest food bank, Daily Bread serves people through neighbourhood food banks and meal programs in almost 170 member agencies across Toronto. Find out more information at www.dailybread.ca.

SOURCE Daily Bread Food Bank

For further information:

Richard Matern
(A) Director, Research
T: 416-203-0050 ext.288
E: richard@dailybread.ca
M: 647-627-3288

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