‘Wealth equals health’: Canada’s doctors warn of growing health inequalities

Rising inequalities mean that Canada’s much loved national health care system is increasingly failing in its fundamental goal of good health for all, reports the Canadian Medical Association, which has launched a national conference in Whitehorse. “There are real inequalities around the country,” says CMA …

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Can a basket of supports help to avoid poor health for people on social assistance?

My last blog about reforming social assistance in Ontario talked about building the vision of a health-enabling social assistance system. This was the cornerstone of our submission to the Commission for the Review of Social Assistance in Ontario, for which we partnered with health leaders …

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Should social assistance help you to scrape by, or to get a good job?

Social assistance is about more than just providing enough money for people to survive. Social assistance should also work to ensure wider opportunities for people to find employment or pursue further training or education. Investing in individuals – from early childhood through high school, to …

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Building a health-enabling social assistance system: Our latest submission to the Commission for the Review of Social Assistance

Over the last year, the Wellesley Institute has been working with community and health sector partners to provide expert advice on how to build a health-enabling social assistance system to inform the work of the Commission for the Review of Social Assistance in Ontario. On …

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Wilkinson says that equality is still better for everyone, and it’s time to act

Many of us today at the Wellesley Institute were fortunate to catch Richard Wilkinson’s lecture, courtesy of MASS LBP and the Dalla Lana School of Public Health at the University of Toronto. It reminded us of several things, including why the project of solving income …

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Review of Social Assistance in Ontario: Health & Health Equity Overview

In 2010, the province of Ontario established the Commission for the Review of Social Assistance in Ontario, led by Commissioners Francis Lankin and Munir A. Sheikh. The Commission’s Terms of Reference are to: Establish an appropriate benefit structure that reduces barriers and supports people’s transition into, and …

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Should social assistance ensure access to health care services, or keep people from getting sick? Both, actually.

The social assistance system causes poor health. The low levels of income supports combined with inadequate supplementary supports like affordable child care and transportation mean that people on social assistance do not have a fair chance at good health. I’ve blogged about this, and have …

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Social assistance reform is happening: Here’s three things to look out for

Incoming premier Kathleen Wynne announced this week that social assistance reform is one of her key priorities. Wynne has asked the Secretary of the Cabinet – Ontario’s top civil servant – to put together an implementation plan for the recommendations made by the social assistance …

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Why Toronto’s rich and poor are hospitalized for different reasons, and what we can do about this

Earlier this week, the Centre for Research on Inner City Health released a report linking patient incomes to types of admissions to hospitals in the Toronto Central LHIN. The report found that people with low and high incomes in Toronto are hospitalized for different reasons: …

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