In Canadian policy circles, basic income has come to mean a stipend paid to families or individuals without the many conditions and rules that govern existing income assistance programs.
The amount received is gradually reduced as income from other sources increases.
However, basic income is not just about welfare reform.
A basic income is most valuable to people in the middle class and those hoping to join them. Here's why a Canadian basic income is inevitable.
Consider Canadians who already benefit from some forms of basic income —families with children under 18 and people aged 65 and above.Read more
The arguments over the morality of basic income are a waste of time because the public already accepts the concept.
To explain, every day, state, local, and national governments giveaway vast amounts of goods, services, and cash. For example, most local governments in the United States operate free public parks and libraries.
In addition, almost all the roads, highways, freeways, and trails in the United States are free for any driver, hiker, walker, or cyclist to use. Beyond that, almost all governments provide free fire departments, ambulance services, and police forces.Read more
Once in a while a mainstream public policy book comes along that has the potential to be a game changer of information, analysis, and sound reasoning. Even rarer is when that same book can strike a warm and inviting tone, beckoning the reader into what feels like a private discussion.
Basic Income for Canadians: The Key to a Healthier, Happier, More Secure Life for All (published by Lorimer) should not be private, though – it should be required reading for every federal and provincial bureaucrat, every municipal politician, and every business owner. It should be on the must-read list for every Canadian who has even the slightest interest in where our nation is headed, and where it could be.Read more
Ontario's short-lived experiment may have met its end, but the author of a new book on basic income says it hasn't shaken her confidence that the program will one day catch on, on a larger scale.
Evelyn Forget, an economist at the University of Manitoba, said the cancellation of basic income in Ontario was a disappointment that sparked outrage among researchers around the world. But it may also have a silver lining.
"I think the cancellation itself probably introduced the idea of basic income to more people than knew about it before it began," she said.Read more
How much money does someone need to participate fully in community life? As health professionals, health researchers, and community members, this is a question we often contemplate. We are deeply concerned recent policy changes in Ontario have further eroded our already fragile safety net, with potentially devastating implications for some of our most vulnerable community members.
We know what we do every day has an impact on our health and well-being. However, poverty and limited access to resources can stymie opportunities to engage in meaningful activities. People living in poverty are often unable to purchase healthy food or get around their communities. These constraints have a significant impact on health and well-being.Read more
Antonio Guterres, United Nations Secretary-General, gave supporters of universal basic income a reason to toast in his address to the general debate of the 73rd Session of the General Assembly of the U.N. on September 25, 2018.
“The very nature of work will change,” said Guterres. “Governments may have to consider stronger safety nets and eventually, universal basic income.”
Guterres has a point. As automation eliminates jobs like data entry workers and postal clerks — 52 percent of tasks are projected to be replaced by robots by 2025 — and a long-running concern is how displaced workers will respond to mass unemployment.Read more
Mayor of Prince Edward County, Robert Quaiff, sought support of a resolution to urge the provincial government to continue the Basic Income Pilot Project, its planned evaluation, and to create policies to encourage good jobs with regular hours and benefits.
Quaiff, in conversation at the recent AMO Conference with the mayor from Kawartha Lakes, learned the program appeared to be working well (in Lindsay).