Tuesday, March 20, 2018

Pets outnumber kids & 9 other facts from 2016 Edmonton Vital Signs report

Caley Ramsay | Global News

The 2016 Edmonton Vital Signs report has been released and it comes with several interesting facts about the Capital City.

Edmonton Vital Signs is an annual report that provides a snapshot of the city, with a focus on one specific topic. This year’s report focused on Edmonton’s immigrant and refugee population, but it also detailed a number of other statistics. (See full report below).

Here are 10 of the most interesting facts to come from this year’s report:


Edmonton has more pets than kids ... (read the whole story on Global News)

Edmonton Journal | Juris Graney | October 4, 2016


University and post-secondary educated immigrants moving to Edmonton are caught in a Catch-22 scenario that is preventing many from following their dreams of living in Canada.

“The biggest problem I’ve found when looking for a job is the Canadian experience,” says Ahmad Alzouabi, who moved to Edmonton from Jordan with his wife and three children in January this year.

“No one will hire me if I don’t have that experience, but how can I get that experience if no one will hire me?”

War prevented the Syrian-born 32-year-old from teaching in his country of birth after completing his four-year bachelor’s degree in English and literature, so he worked in Jordan for a year as an English-as-a-second-language teacher before moving to Canada.

Upon arrival, he supplied his degree to International Qualifications Assessment Service (IQAS) — a government branch that assesses educational credentials and compares them to Canadian standards — yet he’s had no luck in his job search.

“Teaching English here may be more difficult because this is an English native speaking country, so it’s not easy,” he says. “Whenever a volunteer opportunity comes up, I immediately volunteer.”

Read more in The Edmonton Journal.

Edmonton's 2016 living wage: $16.69 per hour

Edmonton Social Planning Council releases annual report

By: Alex Boyd Metro Published on Thu Jun 23 2016

Two working adults living in the city with two kids would each have to make $16.69 an hour in order to make ends meet, according to the Edmonton Living Wage Report released Thursday.
The Edmonton Social Planning Council calculates the living wage every year, using cost of living estimates for Edmonton. They also take into account dollars coming in from government transfers and additional costs like EI and CPP premiums.

The living wage for 2016 is actually 67 cents less than last year, because of child benefit increases from both the federal and provincial governments.

“Our hope is that more Edmonton employers will rise to the challenge and commit to paying a living wage to all their employees,” said ESPC Research Coordinator John Kolkman in a release.
“Research indicates that employers paying a living wage benefit from decreased staff turnover, improved productivity and reduced absenteeism.”

Read the whole article on the Metro.

Download our Living wage report.


Longtime Edmonton philanthropist was active in the city's arts and cultural communities

CBC News Posted: Aug 15, 2016 12:14 PM MT Last Updated: Aug 15, 2016 2:28 PM MT

One block of a downtown avenue has been renamed in honour of longtime Edmonton philanthropist Judy Padua.

The portion of 101A Avenue between 99th Street and 100th Street will now be known as Judy Padua Way.

The designation by the city of Edmonton's naming committee became official on Sunday.

"With this street so close to the Citadel and the Stanley Milner Library, it seemed a fitting recognition to Judy, who spent much of her life dedicated to children and the arts," Cory Sousa of the naming committee said in a statement.

Padua, who died in 2008, was involved with many non-profit organizations during her lifetime, including the World University Service of Canada, the Clifford E. Lee Foundation, the Muttart Foundation, the Edmonton Social Planning Council and the Canadian Centre for Philanthropy.

She was a member of the mayor's task force on Investment in the Arts that led to the establishment of the Edmonton Arts Council. Padua was inducted into the Edmonton Cultural Hall of Fame in 2003.



Opinion: Beefed up child benefits are a poverty game changer

John Kolkman | Edmonton Journal | Published on: June 7, 2016 | Last Updated: June 7, 2016 11:45 PM MDT

Viewed through a social policy lens, the biggest story coming out of the federal and provincial budgets were the enhancements to child benefits.

Starting in July, an Alberta family with two children making $30,000 annually will receive $4,300 more per year from the federal and provincial governments. These improvements are child poverty game changers.

The launch of a new Alberta Child Benefit and increases in federal child benefits, both on July 1, go some distance toward guaranteeing a basic income to all Alberta families with children.

Non-taxable child benefits are the most effective way to reduce poverty because they put money directly into the pockets of low-income families.

Low-income working families receive the same amount as those on government income support at the same level of income. Administrative costs are negligible. Amounts are calculated by the Canadian Revenue Agency from tax returns. This makes it more important than ever for all low-income families to file tax returns regardless of whether they pay tax or not.

Click here to read the rest of the article in the Edmonton Journal.