The recently released Newfoundland and Labrador provincial budget has resulted in widespread protest about the government’s proposed austerity measures, including sweeping increases in taxation and cuts to programs. Austerity budgets aimed at deficit reduction often disproportionately hurt the poor and working families. In particular, women, who typically earn less than men and utilize more government services, are negatively impacted. Specifically, vulnerable women, such as lone mothers, seniors and First Nations women, suffer the most when governments engage in drastic cutbacks in programs. Women in Newfoundland and Labrador already experience significant gender inequalities; for example, they earn on average $4/h less than men. They have the lowest median income compared to women in any other province. The widespread cuts in programs will come with significant lay-offs within education and the public service; women with a decent income are more likely to work in these positions than in other areas. You can download and read the full report here.
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