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Civic leaders push $75 million poverty-busting plan

Written by Laurie Monsebraaten
Published in The Toronto Star\

Toronto’s 2016 operating budget must include at least $75 million for poverty reduction to ensure city council’s quest to create prosperity for all residents “takes off with determination and goodwill,” say community leaders and activists.

Toronto’s first-ever comprehensive strategy to fight poverty, passed unanimously by council last month, “has the potential to be a real game changer,” the activists say in a letter to Toronto Mayor John Tory and city councillors on the eve of Tuesday’s 2016 budget launch.

“Together, let’s build a legacy of hope, fairness and opportunity for everyone in our city,” says the letter signed by more than 50 community leaders, including the heads of Civic Action, the United Way and Social Planning Toronto and endorsed by the Toronto Board of Trade.

The letter lists 49 poverty-busting recommendations to kick-start action on four key areas — jobs, children, housing and transit — highlighted in TO Prosperity, the city’s 20-year anti-poverty blueprint.

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