Mayor urges Ottawa to start a guaranteed basic income

The Sarnia Observer

Sarnia’s mayor says the time has come for Canada to implement a guaranteed basic income.

The concept of a new and simplified income security program has gained traction during the pandemic, with the federal government’s Canada Emergency Relief Benefit, or CERB, coming close to a basic income measure.

Last week, Sarnia Mayor Mike Bradley sent a letter to Prime Minister Justin Trudeau calling for both a municipal assistance program and a basic income plan.

A basic income top-up would eliminate the bureaucracy and provide stability for people living below the poverty line, he said.

“You keep it simple and you put in caps on who would be eligible,” Bradley told The Journal.

In 2016, Sarnia-Lambton sought to host an Ontario guaranteed basic income pilot project. It had the support of city council, Lambton County council, and Sarnia-Lambton’s Conservative MP and MPP.

Four other communities were eventually choses, but the trial program was quickly scrapped by the incoming Conservative government.