Every year, the Manitoba government puts a call out for people to submit ideas for the annual provincial budget. We believe that the provincial budget must focus on social and economic justice for all - starting with addressing poverty.
Our coalition is committed to changing public policy to achieve a Manitoba without poverty. The recommendations in our submission to the government are rooted in the priorities of people with lived experience of poverty as well as those who work directly with them.
The causes of poverty and social exclusion go well beyond inadequate incomes and unemployment. They include the inability to access affordable and adequate housing, childcare, public transportation, health services, recreation, education and training. Make Poverty History Manitoba believes that any effort to meaningfully address poverty and exclusion must adopt a comprehensive and systematic approach, within a legislated framework. We must have social inclusion for every person in Manitoba.
See our Six Ideas for Ending Poverty for Manitoba's Budget 2020 below.
- Poverty Reduction Strategy: Manitoba should immediately revise its poverty reduction strategy, committing to a bold target and timeline within a comprehensive poverty reduction strategy to reduce poverty and social exclusion in Manitoba.
- Minimum Wage: Incrementally raise the minimum wage to a poverty line wage of $16.58 per hour.
- Social Housing: Build at least 300 net new social housing units annually for five years.
- Income Benefits: Introduce a new basic needs benefit to lift all Manitobans up to or above the poverty line.
- Child Care: Create at least 17,000 licensed and funded, non-profit childcare spaces with priority in low-income neighbourhoods.
- Mental Health: Double the funding allotted to community-based mental health services for low-income Manitobans beginning with an increase in mental health spending by 40 per cent over three years with priority given to community-based mental health services.