Former security guard Tim Button considers how a sudden increase in his income from an unusual social experiment has changed his life in this Canadian industrial city along the shore of Lake Ontario.
Sipping coffee in a Tim Horton’s doughnut shop, Button says he has been unable to work because of a fall from a roof, and the financial boost from Ontario Province’s new “basic income” program has enabled him to make plans to visit distant family for Christmas for the first time in years. It has also prompted him to eat healthier, schedule a long-postponed trip to the dentist and mull taking a course to help him get back to work.Read more
An American charity launched this week a 12-year-long experiment in Kenya involving 6,000 people and $30 million to test the potential success of basic income. By the year, 2030, researchers will have troves of data on how basic income has affected thousands.
The founders of the New York-based nonprofit GiveDirectly distinguish their basic income experiment from others by selecting people in “extreme poverty” for their study, the early results of which they expect to receive “within the next year or two.”Read more
One of Canada’s most well-known inequality fighters, Senator Art Eggleton, inspired members of the Ontario Basic Income Network recently who were in Lindsay for their annual general meeting.
In his opening remarks, Eggleton wondered aloud if Lindsay would become known as “the Dauphin, Manitoba of this decade.”
Dauphin was a small town in Manitoba which was chosen for a program called ‘Mincome’ (minimum income) in the 1970s, which helped establish a reliable minimum income for about a third of the people who lived there.Read more
The mayor of Hamilton, Fred Eisenberger, says his gut tells him basic income is “the wise thing to do” for an employment landscape that is rapidly changing.
Eisenberger told Case for Basic Income that he would like to think that all political parties, both provincial and federal, understand the need to do something different to guard against sweeping economic change.
“It’s about the changing employment environment and any self-respecting government should recognize that,” he says, pointing out he hopes if there is a government change in Ontario that the pilot would be allowed to continue.Read more
Poverty, especially child poverty, is a huge black mark in my hometown of Surrey and in British Columbia and Canada at large. We know that poverty leads to poor health and social outcomes for children in later years. Poverty is essentially a waste of human resources. It ensures that a segment of the population will not be living up to their potential.
Thousands of people are forced to take low-wage jobs with no benefits or pension to pay the bills. They are unable to pursue their true passion in life, whether that is to go to school or start a new company or volunteer in the community.Read more
About two thirds of basic income sign-ups so far have come from the so-called ‘working poor,’ a fact Lindsay residents who are struggling should take note of as it begins to unfold in the small Kawartha-area town.
Ontario’s Minister of Community and Social Services, Helena Jaczek, and her counterpart, Peter Milczyn, the minister responsible for the poverty reduction strategy and minister of housing, held a press conference in Hamilton earlier this morning to update the public on the basic income pilot.Read more
From my kitchen window I could see the two girls were about four and six years old.
They had just hopped out of a rusting, black Suzuki Esteem, circa 2001 maybe, making a beeline for our large recycling bin.
The father was grey, unshaven and hunched as he swiftly followed them. The youngest eagerly picked up a pop can and the father slapped it out of her hand back into the bin.
I could see him pick up a green Steam Whistle can and it was clear that he was explaining to her that the beer can was the real goal.Read more
Ursula Samuels wants to know that basic income will help Hamiltonians on social assistance get ahead.
The 60-year-old mother who attended an information session at the Hamilton Central Library said she receives Ontario Works, and between juggling rent, food and other responsibilities, "it's a struggle every month to get by."
"What I want to see is that people would be better off," she added.
Karen Glass, assistant deputy minister at the Poverty Reduction Strategy Office, spoke about the province's three-year basic income pilot and fielded questions from the crowd of more than 75 people Monday night.
She explained that people on social assistance would have to forego their Ontario Works or Ontario Disability Support Program payments to become part of the basic income study, but they would keep their health and dental benefits.Read more
SHEDIAC–It was 46 years ago when Armand Bannister and his team released their white paper on social development that urged the adoption of a basic income guarantee in New Brunswick.
As director of the task force on social development, Bannister presented it to then-Premier Richard Hatfield who had just begun his unprecedented 17-year run as premier.
But Hatfield squandered this opportunity, as history shows, and instead Manitoba took the lead on basic income with the support of then-Prime Minister Pierre Trudeau, in its well-known Mincome experiment.
New Brunswick has never looked at it seriously again, although that might be set to change, if Bannister has anything to say about it. That’s because 46 years later, the 82-year-old advocate has never given up the fight for basic income and sees a golden opportunity with the movement growing stronger than ever, from Ontario, to Prince Edward Island, to British Columbia and Quebec.Read more
There was a thick overlay of snow on the ground the day 7-year-old Sebastian Borjas and his family landed in Canada in 2005, tired from their long journey from Honduras. The previous night’s spring snowstorm was perhaps a harbinger of the challenges that were to come.
They came for a better life, the dream of most every immigrant family to Canada. In Honduras they had grown weary of the political instability, kindled by intrusive American foreign policy, with a backdrop of gang violence.Read more