Half of Canadians facing food insecurity have a disability: Study

Maple Leaf Foods Inc 50 of Canadians who struggle with food in

Maple Leaf Foods and the Maple Leaf Center for Food Security have launched a campaign to advance the creation of the Canada Disability Benefit.

In Canada, one of the world’s wealthiest countries, almost six million people struggle to access sufficient food. Fifty per cent (50 per cent) of people in Canada experiencing food insecurity have a disability.

This is largely an income issue, compounded by social, health, geographic and knowledge factors. According to Statistics Canada, 41 per cent of people living with low income have a disability, and with the added costs of living and physical barriers, they are especially vulnerable to food insecurity.

A recent study found households with a person with a disability had nearly twice the likelihood of experiencing food insecurity compared to households without a person with a disability.

“Living with a disability should not mean a life of poverty and hunger,” said Sarah Stern, leader, Maple Leaf Center for Food Security. “Our focus is to accelerate structural solutions to reducing food insecurity in Canada. Through the creation of the Canada Disability Benefit, addressing the injustice of food insecurity among people with disabilities is within our reach as a nation. We were very pleased to see Bill C -22 debated in the House yesterday and encourage the government to expeditiously design and implement the benefit.”

There is still a lot of work to be done to get the benefit, designed and then legislated, but people need the income today. This campaign is highlighting Disability Without Poverty’s work to ask the public to show their support for the Canada Disability Benefit so that people with disabilities can live meaningful lives with independence, autonomy, and dignity.

The Maple Leaf Center for Food Security is calling on Canadians to help by sending a letter to their MPs in support of this benefit.

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