Advocates turn up heat on poverty strategy – Catholic Register

Now that Canadians have had nine months to tell Ottawa what they want to see in a national poverty reduction strategy, people like Mary Boyd are hoping to increase pressure on the Liberal government to fulfill its 2015 campaign promise to set targets and measure progress on poverty nationwide.

“We would like the government to use the term eradication or elimination of poverty, rather than reduction. Reduction is a weak word,” said Boyd, who is director of the MacKillop Centre for Social Justice in Charlottetown, PEI.

Named after St. Mary MacKillop, Australia’s first saint who had many relatives on Canada’s east coast, the MacKillop Centre was sure to get its recommendations on housing, the social safety net and Indigenous poverty into Employment and Social Development Canada before the Aug. 31 deadline.

“This is a moral question,” Boyd said. “We all know well that Christ had a preferential option for the poor. He did because the poor are defenceless. They need people to take their side, to go to bat for them. They need the problem of poverty to be called what it really is — a moral, sinful problem in our society.”

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