Keep saying how unions suck and how they fail and just syphon cash, and maybe stories like this will become a true reality.
Income divide deepens among Toronto neighbourhoods: report
Toronto is headed toward a scenario where nearly two thirds of residents will be in the low income bracket by 2025, according to a study set to be released Wednesday.
The latest update of the Three Cities within Toronto study from 2007 continues to paint a “devastating picture” of income “segregation” by neighbourhoods, according to one source who has seen the report.
Prior to this latest update, one released last year that was based on the latest census data showed that 15 of the city’s middle income neighbourhoods have disappeared since 2001. The majority of these areas reverted to low income, where individual earnings were 20 to 40 per cent below the city average.
It shows that if current trends continue, a total of 10 per cent of the city will be middle income earners by 2025; 30 per cent will be upper middle income; and a whopping 60 per cent of Toronto’s residents will be in the low to very low income bracket, sources say.
That’s quite a swing from 1970, when 66 per cent of Toronto neighbourhoods were middle income, 15 per cent were upper income, and 19 per cent were low income.
Wednesday’s report is authored by U of T professor and researcher David Hulchanski, as were the two before it. It doesn’t blame municipal governments for the income trends, but one observer pointed out that the report’s release is timely in light of the fiscally minded administration at city hall headed by newly minted Mayor Rob Ford.
Ford has vowed to make about $230 million in spending cuts this year but say he will also retain services. Still, many people worry that whatever cuts Ford makes will still hurt less fortunate residents.
Hulchanski’s latest findings will serve as a “wake-up call” to the Ford administration that it can’t ignore the problem of dwindling incomes in Toronto’s neighbourhoods, says Michael Shapcott, director of affordable housing for the Wellesley Institute, a research body.
Hulchanki’s latest findings send “a clear signal to Ford and members of his administration (that) these are absolutely urgent issues and that while Toronto can’t solve (them) on its own, the city can make a bad situation worse if it’s not careful,” Shapcott added.
A major reason for the dropping income levels is the loss of manufacturing jobs — and the shift to service sector employment, Shapcott argues.
Other reports have documented declining incomes in certain Toronto neighbourhoods. They include the 2004 United Way study called Poverty by Postal Code, which found the problem is particularly acute in many suburban sections of the 416 area code.
Aside from lower incomes, these neighbourhoods tend to have fewer services, higher rates of crime, and less access to transit.
The latest study also found similar income declines in the 905, according to sources.
Hulchanski did not respond to requests for an interview prior to Wednesday’s release.