March 10, 2009

Social spending will stimulate economy: CCPA
British Columbia's poor and middle-class families are getting poorer, a fact that does not consider the effects of the recent economic downturn.

A study released today by the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives shows that when factoring in inflation, the bottom 70 per cent of B.C. families are now earning less than their parents' generation.

At the same time, income inequality among families continues to widen, with the gap growing to the point that the top 10 per cent now earn more than the entire bottom half combined

The study used Statistics Canada income data from 1976 to 2006 for B.C. families with children under the age of 18. Employment earnings were compared as well as total after-tax income, including income tax and government transfers.

"What was surprising to me was that we have seen such big drops not just in earnings . . . but in after-tax income," said the report’s author and CCPA public interest researcher Iglika Ivanova.