Toronto "does not work for all" says Vital Signs report

by Steve Randall on 08 Oct 2019

Toronto has some challenges to address as the population grows, housing becomes more expensive, and wage growth stagnates.

A new report from the Toronto Foundation highlights the inequalities that face thousands of Torontonians and the need to ensure that the city is viable.

"Despite our self-image, Toronto does not work for all. In fact, for a growing majority, life in the city poses a serious struggle, and the trend lines suggest things will get worse before they get better," says Sharon Avery, president and CEO, Toronto Foundation. "For those who think that things are no tougher today, Toronto's Vital Signs is a wake-up call. We've compiled more data than ever before and the evidence is clear: inequality is the new normal."

Widening wealth inequality is an issue for the city’s youth, newcomers, and racialized communities, who have had no inflation-adjusted increases in income over the last 30 years.

Meanwhile, older, white, residents have seen their income grow by 60% in that period.

Those with lower incomes are facing increasing challenges of rising housing costs and other costs of living; and their debt burden is increasing.

"The report confirms that the old ways aren't working. New voices and new actors are needed at the table to fight inequality," says Avery. "Ahead of the upcoming election, we can use Toronto's Vital Signs report to ask our leaders how they will ensure Toronto's gains are not overwhelmed by growing pains and exclusions. At Toronto Foundation, we believe philanthropy is everybody. We want to build a culture of reciprocity in this city."

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