Welcome To
Acadia Broadcasting NewsThe Latest and Greatest ContentYour Trusted Local Source


N.B. has lowest social assistance rates in Canada: report

By Brad Perry Aug 2, 2023 | 5:02 PM

The Common Front for Social Justice says the province needs to increase social assistance rates.

It follows a report from the Maytree Foundation that found New Brunswick has the lowest rates in Canada.

Robert MacKay, community co-chair for Common Front, described it as an emergency situation.

“My brothers and sisters in poverty are like the frog being gradually boiled alive not realizing the certainty of its premature death,” MacKay said in an interview.

MacKay said they are calling on the province to increase the social assistance rates to at least the poverty line.

New Brunswick’s poverty line ranges from $23,754 to $25,497 for a single person, according to what is known as the Market Basket Measure.

According to Maytree’s report, a single person considered employable earned $8,031 last year, which was 34 per cent lower than the average of all provincial rates.

A single person with a disability received $10,884, which was 30 per cent behind the average of all provincial rates.

“It’s almost impossible for everybody to live a dignified life, but for people who have been double and triple whammied by the things that have happened in the last two, three, four years, it’s like a death blow,” said MacKay.

MacKay, who lives on social assistance himself, said many people are suffering and cannot afford basic necessities.

Janelle LeBlanc, the provincial coordinator for Common Front, said the province must act swiftly and invest in the social assistance program.

“If not, more people will continue to suffer and social problems will continue to grow,” LeBlanc said, noting poverty is costing the province over $1 billion every year.


Leave a Reply