What happens to one of the world’s poorest places if you randomly pick more than 10,000 poor families out of an eligible pool and give them $1,000 each, no strings attached?

Dozens of studies have already shown conclusively that just handing very poor people a considerable sum of cash can transform their lives in lasting ways. That is hardly surprising. But this study set out to ask a different question: What about their neighbors?

There is someone waiting on a list for affordable housing in more than 283,000 households across the country, Statistics Canada says in a new batch of data that also sheds light on what Canadians think about the cost of housing overall.

The survey data, the first of its kind on wait times for social housing, shows 173,600 households, or nearly two-thirds, were waiting at least two years.

The payments that Nunavut welfare recipients receive each year are dramatically lower than what their counterparts in Yukon and the Northwest Territories receive, a new report shows.

And if you subtract the value of social housing benefits, Nunavut’s annual welfare income in 2018 was close to that paid to welfare recipients living in southern Canada.

The report, titled Welfare in Canada, was issued by a national non-profit anti-poverty organization called Maytree.

For 2018, an unemployed couple with two children living in Iqaluit could expect to receive a total welfare income in 2018 of only $29,561, the Maytree report found.

That’s a little less than in Ontario, where a couple in the same situation would get $30,998 in 2018, or Manitoba, where the figure was $29,918.

Use of food banks in Canada has stabilized but a new report shows that single people – and especially seniors – are more likely to be using the facilities.

As more Canadians struggle with their finances, Food Banks Canada says that food bank use among single people has hit a record high with single person households accounting for 48% of users.

By analyzing data from 4,934 food banks across Canada, the organization has discovered that this percentage is up from 38% in 2010, while single parent usage has fallen in that time from 27.5% to 18%.

Bad sleep affects marginalized people disproportionately, says Aric Prather, a clinical health psychologist in California. A 2017 study from France found that people experiencing homelessness sleep significantly less than the general population; 41 percent report insomnia. Shelter operators witness first-hand the frustration and aggression caused by exhaustion. But few shelters have the capacity to accommodate flexible sleeping schedules. In public areas, municipalities are prone to installing “hostile” architectural elements, such as tilted benches and street spikes, which are intentionally designed to prevent people from lying down. Social stigma and aggression from passersby can worsen the situation for anyone trying to find an hour of rest in a bus shelter or at a public park.

Why does government allow transnational food corporations such as McCain, PepsiCo and Walmart to source and promote the Canadian food bank industry? Is feeding “leftover” food to “left behind” people really the best we can do? Whatever happened to public policy and the right to food?

Four million Canadians struggling or unable to put food on the table, including Indigenous people, the worst affected, do indeed constitute a national crisis. In food-secure Canada, the problem is not lack of food but of purchasing power. Health Canada’s surveys confirm this. Hungry Canadians need cash to buy their food in normal, customary and dignified ways.

U.S.-style food banking was imported to Western Canada in 1981, by 1989 becoming an institutionalized second tier of Canada’s leaking social safety net.

The rate of severe food insecurity dropped by one-third among low-income families after a federal child benefit was introduced three years ago, a University of Toronto study has found, and its lead researcher says it’s proof more can be done.

The Canada Child Benefit was introduced by the Liberal government in 2016 as a tax-free monthly payment designed to assist parents with the cost of raising kids.

The study found that although the benefit had not resulted in “huge change” in food insecurity in Canada, it did help families in extreme situations, where they had to compromise the amount of food they ate due to money constraints.

“Our study results are yet another piece of evidence that improving household incomes reduces food insecurity,” Valerie Tarasuk, the study’s senior author, said