'Non-taxable child benefits are the most effective way to reduce poverty,' new report says

CBC News Posted: Feb 09, 2017 4:39 PM MT Last Updated: Feb 09, 2017 4:39 PM MT

New child tax benefits from the provincial and federal governments are cited as a "game changers" for ending child poverty in a new report released Thursday by the Edmonton Social Planning Council.

A Profile of Poverty in Edmonton suggests the Alberta Child Benefit and the Canada Child Benefit will have a direct impact on families.

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

The report says that in 2014, 17.8 per cent of children in Edmonton — 34,220 kids ages 0 to 17 — lived in low-income families.

A family with two children making $30,000 a year will receive an additional $4,300 a year from the Canada Child Benefit and the Alberta Child Benefit.

The Alberta Family Employment Tax Credit also helps, the report says. The credit is given to low-income working families. The maximum benefit for a working family with two children is $1,457 a year.

The benefits mean the living wage calculated by the Edmonton Social Planning Council is lower for lone- and two-parent families in 2016 compared to the previous year.

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