Justices spar with Ford government lawyers over cancellation of basic income pilot

The Toronto Star

Ontario Superior Court justices blasted the Ford government Monday for saying participants in the now-cancelled basic income pilot project were wrong to expect the study to run for three years.

Despite signing documents that said they would receive income for “up to” three years, it was not a “guarantee of three years,” government lawyer Christopher Thompson argued before the three-judge panel being asked to overturn the decision to kill the project.

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Court reserves judgment on basic income case

Roderick Benns

An Ontario Court has reserved judgment on the high profile basic income case which was argued by Kawartha Lakes lawyer and social worker Mike Perry in a Toronto court room today.

However, the court also recognized this was a time sensitive matter, given that the program will end as of March, 2019.

Many believe this will be a matter of days, not weeks, before the court rules.

The challenge heard today was the application for the court to overturn the decision to cancel the Ontario Basic Income Pilot. A pending class action lawsuit will only be heard if the court decides not to overturn the Province’s decision and the pilot doesn’t continue.

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Basic income was helping with crushing cost of housing: Survey

Roderick Benns

OBIP Chronicles — Finding affordable housing in Ontario hasn’t been easy for decades. For people collecting basic income in Lindsay, Hamilton area, and Thunder Bay area, the pressures they were facing with housing costs were lessened with the new benefit they were receiving, although all of that is ending in March with the cancellation of the Ontario Basic Income Pilot.

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The economics of homelessness as basic income pilot winds down

Roderick Benns

Seventy-six years ago, an American psychologist named Abraham Maslow emphasized the process of growing and developing as a person in order to achieve one’s potential.

He called this process a ‘hierarchy of needs’ and, in a testament to common sense, said nothing was more important than basic physical requirements like food, water, sleep, and warmth, as well as safety and security.

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Poverty to hope, then back again: Study reveals why basic income pilot held such promise

Roderick Benns

Study results from the Ontario Basic Income Pilot’s baseline survey have now been released, revealing the stories of participants were hoping to break the cycle of poverty, find better jobs and opportunities, stabilize their housing, and improve their health and well-being.

The baseline survey was conducted by an arms-length, independent evaluation team led by St. Michael’s Hospital in Toronto. Under the initial agreement signed by enrollees, the descriptive statistics were to be made available to pilot participants who requested the survey results (no personal information was included).

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Spend on social services, save on health care, says new Saint John doc

CBC News

You may have heard the old saying, "An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure."

A new Saint John doctor and medical educator says the same holds true for spending on social services.

"Spending on social services tends to have a larger impact on gigantic health outcomes, such as dying, versus spending on health care," said Dr. Daniel Dutton, the newest addition to the instructional staff at Dalhousie Medicine New Brunswick.

"In Canada, we spend a gigantic proportion of our money ... on health care, which ends up being treatment of diseases.

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When the gig economy becomes a public health issue

Globe and Mail

Linda Nazareth is a senior fellow at the Macdonald-Laurier Institute. Her bookWork Is Not a Place: Our Lives and Our Organizations in the Post Jobs Economy is now available.

Another day, another dollar, right? Not exciting maybe, maybe not that fun either, but at least predictable.

Having a job that provides a paycheque at regular intervals is a source of comfort, while not having one is a source of stress. Today, an increasing number of workers get that dollar some days but for one reason or another, some days they do not. As a result, they may be more or less employed, but stressed all at the same time. Income instability is becoming the reality for many, and with that instability comes worry and strain – and maybe health consequences as well.

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