A Further Look at Food Insecurity among Ontario’s Child Welfare Involved Population

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CWRP Information Sheet #186E. Toronto, ON: Canadian Child Welfare Research Portal.

The Ontario Incidence Study of Reported Child Abuse and Neglect, 2013 (OIS-2013) is the fifth provincial study to examine the incidence of reported child maltreatment and the characteristics of children and families investigated by child welfare authorities in Ontario. This Information Sheet builds on Lefebvre and Fallon (2016) and further examines food insecurity among the children, youth and families who are investigated by child welfare authorities. Poverty is associated with child maltreatment and involvement in the child welfare system. Families living in poverty may experience food insecurity along with other socioeconomic hardships such as poor housing conditions and unemployment. In the OIS-2013, workers were asked to identify whether the household had run out of money for food in the last six months. This variable can act as a proxy indicator for food insecurity and allows us to examine this issue within a representative sample of child welfare investigations.

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