There may be more hunger in the city than you think.

A new study reveals nearly one thousand people rely on food assistance every day.

Kingston’s food providers have unveiled their first ever report that paints a “clear and startling” picture of food insecurity.

“It’s not glamourous but it packs a punch with data we’ve not seen before,” said Mara Shaw, executive director of Loving Spoonful.

An Ottawa food bank is saying no thank you to Kraft Dinner, hot dogs and dozens of other items deemed unhealthy.

Parkdale Food Centre co-ordinator Karen Secord says everybody deserves good-quality food – even those who can’t afford it.

“I don’t want canned stew, Alpha-Getti, Kraft Dinner, pop, chips, candy,” Secord told CTV Ottawa.

Parkdale Food Centre co-ordinator Karen Secord says everybody deserves good-quality foods – even those who can’t afford it.

Going through a box of donated food items, Secord is quick to take some pieces out of the mix. Among the items that failed to make the cut are: a box of Dunkaroos, a package of Maynards Swedish Berries, an opened bottle of salad dressing that expired in 2008 and an opened container of Hot Rod meat snacks.

10. Canada already promised to end poverty

9. Poverty can happen to anyone

8. Poverty actually affects how long people live

7. Poverty affects people’s quality of life, including their health

6. Poverty is a major barrier to overcome before Canada can present itself as a country that recognizes equality

5. Canada’s lack of action to end poverty is shameful

4. Canada has been scolded by the international community for not addressing poverty issues

3. We have no excuse not to

2. Poverty costs Canadians A LOT of money

1. Canada is LEGALLY obligated to address poverty

The most frustrating provincial regulation, as far as many northerners are concerned, involves medical emergencies. OHIP will cover the cost of an ambulance to take people to the nearest hospital (which can be hundreds of kilometres away). But they have to find their own way home. That might make sense in downtown Toronto, but in northern Ontario it leaves patients stranded. If they don’t have a relative or friend who can pick them up, the only way home is a taxi. The cab fare from the hospital in Dryden to the centre of Ignace is $210.

These three tales epitomized the gulf in understanding that exists between policy-makers at Queen’s Park and folks in northwestern Ontario for anti-poverty activist Mike Balkwill , a Torontonian who just completed a fact-finding tour of this harsh but beautiful part of the province.

These are tough times in Ontario. Once an economic giant, Ontario now has one of the largest debt-loads of any sub-national government in the world. And on a day-to-day basis for many, Ontario is a province in crisis: 40% of those who suffer food insecurity in Canada live in Ontario; a job in Ontario no longer protects against poverty where 10% of those using food banks are gainfully employed; immigrants, newcomers and other vulnerable groups are over-represented in precarious employment, often working multiple part-time jobs and still not earning enough to make ends meet; social assistance recipients are living at least 40% below any accepted poverty line, and thousands of people, including many youth, are homeless, living in shelters, on the streets or doubled up with friends, and family.