GODERICH - The economic slowdown that is hitting Ontario especially hard will likely mean the province will have to delay its promised anti-poverty plan.

Premier Dalton McGuinty says the economy and its impact on the province's revenues and future spending plans was a main topic at a Liberal caucus retreat in Goderich.

McGuinty says the Liberal government remains committed to coming up with a plan to help the poorest of the poor, and especially to help children living in poverty.

But the poverty agenda may have to wait because of the state of Ontario's economy.

McGuinty says the government likely will not be able to move as quickly as it intended, but insisted that would not stop the Liberals from developing their poverty-reduction plan.

Anti-poverty activists say Ontario's faltering economy should not be an excuse for the Liberals to backtrack on their election promises to help the poor.

A coalition of social groups wants the province to spend "significant dollars" to cut poverty by 25 per cent in five years and by 50 per cent within a decade.