New Brunswick's first-ever poverty reduction plan adopted
Between October 2008 and November 2009, the New Brunswick government embarked on a three-stage public engagement process in order to design an economic and social inclusion plan. Its goal was to ensure that all sectors of New Brunswick society, including business, community nonprofit organizations and citizens, would share responsibility with the government for creating new opportunities for residents.
Together they will implement action in three areas: Being (meeting basic needs), Becoming (life-long learning and skills acquisition) and Belonging (community). 50 participants for the Final Forum on Poverty met in Saint John in November and this month the plan has been officially adopted and is the first-ever poverty reduction plan for the province.
Overcoming Poverty Together: The New Brunswick Economic and Social Inclusion Plan aims to reduce income poverty in the province by 25 per cent and deep income poverty by 50 per cent by 2015.
"What has been agreed is exceptional, and it will put us on the right path to achieving our poverty-reduction goals and helping thousands of New Brunswickers be more self-sufficient," said Premier Shawn Graham.
Participants at the forum agreed on specific initiatives to ensure ongoing collaboration between government, the business sector and the organizations delivering poverty-reduction initiatives.
Portions of this article have been taken from the following sources: New Brunswick’s “Overcoming Poverty Together” Plan Earns Praise and Creates Hope, Anne Makhoul, February 2010, abstract; The Governmant of New Brunswick's Social Development website