Mayor Matt Brown today received the final report from his advisory panel on poverty.
The 50-page report, with a goal of ending poverty in London within a generation, was developed after extensive community consultations by panel members Deputy Mayor Maureen Cassidy, Dr. Chris Mackie, Medical Officer of Health; Vanessa Ambtman-Smith, Aboriginal Health Lead with the southwest LHIN; Dr. Helene Berman, Professor at Western Health Sciences; Dharshi Lacey, Diversity Program Manager at Pillar; Andrew Lockie, CEO United Way Middlesex-London; Dr. Abe Oudshoorn, Professor at the School of Nursing at Western; and Glen Pearson, co-director of the London Food Bank.
“Six months ago, I asked the members of the poverty panel to confront an extremely difficult and complex challenge: What can we do as a city, as a community, to finally end the burden of poverty,” the Mayor said. “Today I am so pleased to receive their report. I know it is thorough. I know it is thoughtful. I know it is focused. And I know it will be a community call to action to all of us who strive to make London a better city for all.”
The report’s 112 recommendations address a variety of areas: income and employment; changing mindsets; health; homeless prevention and housing; transportation; early learning and education; food security and system change. The report also contains implementation strategies and effective measurements to gauge progress.
“Londoners spoke very clearly to us,” said Deputy Mayor and panel co-chair Maureen Cassidy. ”The time for change, the time to act, is now. Poverty, we learned, is not just about the individual, it is about the community.”
“Panel members attended almost 100 meetings and met with more than 1,000 Londoners to fully understand the issue of poverty in our community,” said co-chair, Dr. Chris Mackie. “Ending poverty in one generation is a lofty goal and it is only by working together that we will more effectively address gaps, remove barriers and help end the cycle of poverty for future generations.”
At the Mayor’s request, the panel will present the report to Council for endorsement at the April 18 Strategic Priorities and Policy Committee.
The report is posted on line at London.ca/povertypanel