There is an excellent article in the Toronto Star about why we have little understanding about the social demographic situation in Canada! Bref! No one can afford the research! In the article Truth carries a painful user fee; Carol Goar tells it like it is right now in Canada when it comes to access to our public data:
The United Way of Greater Toronto had to pay the agency $28,000 for government data showing that family poverty deepened in Toronto between 2000 and 2005, while low-income households made modest gains everywhere else.
It had to spend its donors’ money to prove that Toronto has the lowest median income of any major urban centre in the country.
It had to dip into its charitable givings to marshal evidence â€“ already collected at taxpayers’ expense â€“ that a one-size-fits-
all poverty strategy won’t work for Toronto.
Finally an article that is so pointed on why the cost recovery practices of Statistics Canada are impeding citizens and civil sector organizations from doing their work. This type of analysis is critical in a democratic society, we cannot leave this type of research only to governments, particularly when the results may be pointing to some of its failures. An well, it is also not on the private sector’s radar!
Thanks Ted for posting this on the SPNO-Data List.