Did you know poverty costs New Brunswick $2 billion per year?

The direct cost of poverty for the NB government is an estimated $500 million per year--6.5% of the 2009/10 provincial budget.  Health care spending alone amounts to $196 million per year, an amount that could be saved or reallocated if we lifted the poorest 20% of New Brunswickers out of poverty.  For society overall, the cost of poverty is much higher — up to two billion dollars a year in New Brunswick.  This corresponds to as much as $2,700 per person, per year.  Thus, when the direct costs to government are added to broader costs of poverty, this total cost of poverty ($2 billion) is equivalent to 7% of New Brunswick’s GDP (gross domestic product or size of its economy).

Read the report here.

Authors Angella MacEwan and Christine Saulnier released the report on September 28, covered by Global here and CBC here.