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HomeNewsPoverty numbers in the Bulkley Valley and Lakes District soaring to new...

Poverty numbers in the Bulkley Valley and Lakes District soaring to new heights

Like most of BC, the Bulkley Valley and Lakes District received a failing grade for the number of kids living in poverty.

Scott Graham is the Associate Director of the Social Development Research Council of BC who says a region in the northwest is almost leading the entire province when it comes to its poverty rate

“When you take a look at the Stikine region you’ve got a full 31.8% of all children living in poverty, among some of the highest poverty rates in the province.”

Within the Regional District of Bulkley-Nechako, over 20% of all children are living in poverty, which is higher than both the national and provincial average.

BC’s rate is a little over 18%, while the national rate is a full point lower at 17.4%.

“That amounts to one-in-five children still living in poverty and more of BC continues to have higher rates of child poverty compared to the national average, so all of these things indicate we still have a fair bit of work to do.”

The provincial rate stands have a trickle-down effect, limiting the number of quality opportunities most people take for granted.

“So when we think about these numbers, we have to gear our mind of thinking that behind every one of those numbers is a child that doesn’t have the opportunity to access swimming lessons, clothing they like, educational opportunities and chances to see family who live away,” added Graham.

Thirty-six percent of the 14-thousand children living with either grandparents, relatives, non-relatives or in foster care were living in poverty.

The child poverty rate for children in lone-parent families is 47.7% and is four times the rate of their counterparts in other families.

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