New West seniors' poverty rate above B.C. average

More than 11 per cent of seniors living in poverty

More than one in 10 New Westminster seniors are living in poverty, according to new statistics released this week.

The B.C. Seniors’ Poverty Report Card from the Social Planning and Research Council of B.C. revealed that 11.2 per cent of locals 65 and up were living below the Low Income Measure — meaning they make less than 50 percent of the area’s median household income.

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The provincial average was 8.8 per cent.

The top three highest seniors’ poverty rates in B.C. belonged to Richmond (20.3 per cent), Surrey (16.5 per cent) and Burnaby (16.1 per cent).

“The B.C. Seniors’ Poverty Report Card provides compelling evidence that seniors’ poverty is a growing challenge across our province,” said Scott Graham, SPARC BC’S associate executive director and manager of research, planning and consulting, in press release. “It provides clear evidence that specific poverty reduction strategies for seniors are necessary.”

The report found that B.C. has Canada’s highest rate of seniors’ poverty.

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