The Institute of Wellbeing launched its first report, How are Canadians Really Doing? The report summarizes the key findings of the first three research studies on Living Standards, Health Populations and Community Vitality:
Even in good economic times the lion’s share of benefits went to the wealthy while the poor stayed poor and the shrinking middle class muddled through.
- Canadians are living longer but not healthier, the health of young Canadians is particularly in decline.
- Crime is down and social relationships in our communities are stronger.
- Cuts or lack of improvements to government programs like welfare, Employment Insurance and publicly funded medical services are hurting Canadians.
You can find the Institute’s first report and the full research studies at http://www.ciw.ca.
Connecting the Dots…
A key goal of the CIW is to connect the dots among the wide variety of factors that shape our quality of life. The first report found that health status is strongly determined by income and education. It also found that the bulk of those who are poor come from five specific groups – lone parents, unattached individuals aged 45-64, recent immigrants, persons with work-limiting disabilities, and Aboriginal people living off-reserve – even though they make up just 25% of Canada’s total population.
The first report focused particularly on how the drop in health among Canadian youth is connected to the sharp decline in their financial security. In 1998, over 80% of 12–19-year-olds reported “excellent” or “very good” health, but by 2005 this had plunged to 67%. Not surprisingly, given the connection between health and wealth, this was matched by a jump of almost 14 percentage points in the proportion of youth working in low-paid jobs.
Check out our new-look website…
To find out more about the Institute, our first report and how you can become more involved in improving the quality of life for Canadians, please check out our new-look website at http://www.ciw.ca. Everything produced by the Institute is available free of charge in both user-friendly and research-rich format.