Putting safety back into the Social Safety Net

Today, in my inbox, something Minister Day should read.

Putting safety back into the social safety net
by Michelle Mann,
Law Times News
Monday, 19 June 2006


Violence against women remains endemic in Canadian society despite
law-and-order approaches, making it imperative that we consider and address
systemic inequalities that perpetuate domestic violence.

Ontario's social assistance policies facilitate violence against women in
many ways, including subsistence-level rates, the treatment of fraud, and
assumptions of spousal economic dependency.

The erosion of social assistance rates in Ontario and across Canada has made
it difficult for women to get out of violent situations. Social assistance
rates that are grossly inadequate to address women's needs create a barrier
to their ability to leave or avoid abusive relationships.

Simply put, poverty and low payments leave lower-income women with few
options for survival. Abuse of women occurs in every economic stratum, but
financial disadvantage creates a stubborn barrier to escape.

Enhancement of social assistance rates won't eradicate violence against
women, but would give a lifeline to some of the most vulnerable women in
Canadian society.

Read the full article

With thanks to Barbara at DAWN Ontario


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