So does Robert MacKay, a welfare recipient living in Moncton, New Brunswick. He couldn’t survive without using his line of credit, a line of credit he got years ago.
It allows me, so to speak, not to jump off a bridge so as not to have to live in absolute misery from day to day […]so it makes my life so bearable, but of course it comes with a price and some uncertaintysays Robert MacKay.
It’s a little disheartening for me to speak on a topic like this for obvious reasonshe said.
But Robert MacKay, who is also co-chair of the Common Front for Social Justice, says the issue is widespread and he agrees to speak out in hopes of making a difference, acknowledging that most people dare not testify publicly.
Feeding is a big concern
According to a recent Statistics Canada study, inflation has reduced the ability of three out of four Canadians to afford everyday expenses such as transportation, shelter, food and clothing.
73 percent were affected by this price increase in their ability to meet their daily expensesconfirms Lorraine Pineault, an analyst at Statistics Canada.
According to the data collected, there are few differences from one province to another.
Although we hear more about rising gas prices, the number one concern for Canadians overall is rising food prices.
” There are many people who don’t buy gas, but everyone has to eat. »
So if you think so, it’s no big surpriseremembers Lorraine Pineault.
Rising food prices are also forcing more and more people to turn to food banks. One in five Canadians think they will soon have to turn to a food bank to get enough to eat.
A quarter of Canadians borrow money for basic needs
Statistics Canada found that Canadian citizens use a variety of means to meet their basic needs.
We’re trying to cut spending in a thousand and one ways. Forty-seven percent of people buy substitutes or less expensive items. 45 postpone their purchases.
But we also see that 27% of people use credit in various forms to buy groceries and other basic needs. Some borrow money from friends or relatives, or use credit from financial institutions.
According to Statistics Canada, it is primarily low-income households that resort to loans for groceries. These are mainly young people up to the age of 39, but not exclusively, and households with at least one child.
At the same time, 30% of people said they could save less and 20% said they couldn’t save at all.
Go into debt to survive
Robert MacKay, who is unable to work due to various disabilities, says he cannot live on the $590 he receives in welfare every month.
$ supplémentaires sur ma marge de crédit, chaque mois, parfois, 400, 500, cela dépend, parfois seulement une centaine”,”text”:”Chaque mois, je peux ajouter 300$ supplémentaires sur ma marge de crédit, chaque mois, parfois, 400, 500, cela dépend, parfois seulement une centaine”}}”>Every month I can add $300 to my line of credit, sometimes 400, 500, depending, sometimes just 100 every monthhe explains.
Little by little his debt is increasing and of course he has to pay the interest every month.
But he’s not the only one in this situation. Many people do not dare to speak publicly about what they are going through, but their challenges grow nonetheless. In his opinion, his case is just the tip of the iceberg.
According to Robert Mackay, when poorer households get poorer, financial institutions benefit:
Banks are making record profits even with this high inflation and stuff.
State aid that is quickly absorbed
In Quebec, the Legault government decided to pay a sum of $500 to citizens earning less than $100,000. Instead, the New Brunswick government has chosen to provide financial assistance to families and individuals on welfare.
$, une petite goutte dans le seau ici […], et 450$ pour que les familles s’adaptent à cette chose, mais c’est une affaire unique, donc nous avons besoin de plus d’aide du gouvernement”,”text”:”Pour moi, ça va être 225$, une petite goutte dans le seau ici […], et 450$ pour que les familles s’adaptent à cette chose, mais c’est une affaire unique, donc nous avons besoin de plus d’aide du gouvernement”}}”>For me it will be $225, a small drop in the ocean here […]and $450 for families to house this thing, but it’s a one-time deal so we need more help from the governmentstarts Robert MacKay.
Premier Blaine Higgs has not completely closed the door on additional aid but has made no commitment whatsoever.