MIT Technology Review
Dana Bowman, 56, expresses gratitude for fresh produce at least 10 times in the hour and a half we’re having coffee on a frigid spring day in Lindsay, Ontario. Over the many years she scraped by on government disability payments, she tended to stick to frozen vegetables. She’d also save by visiting a food bank or buying marked-down items near or past their sell-by date.
But since December, Bowman has felt secure enough to buy fresh fruit and vegetables. She’s freer, she says, to “do what nanas do” for her grandchildren, like having all four of them over for turkey on Easter. Now that she can afford the transportation, she might start taking classes in social work in a nearby city. She feels happier and healthier—and, she says, so do many other people in her subsidized apartment building and around town. “I’m seeing people smiling and seeing people friendlier, saying hi more,” she says.Read more
London Free Press
Global capitalism has a serious problem. Organizations such as Oxford University and the Brookings Institute say nearly 50 per cent of today’s jobs are “at risk” of being computerized over the next 20 years.
At its 2016 annual meeting, the World Economic Forum predicted a “fourth industrial revolution” that will result in a net loss of five million jobs over the next five years in 15 countries.
Across the globe workers angrily denounce the shortage of jobs that pay enough to support decent way of life. The middle class in many advanced countries feel they are being hollowed out.
People who feel they have nothing to lose often make self-defeating political decisions. Witness Brexit in the U.K., Donald Trump in America and the ascension of Doug Ford in Ontario.
Business, in its own self-interest, is groping for ways to reform capitalism so its economic proceeds are spread more equitably. But answers that satisfy all the stakeholders are hard to find.
Leaders around the world are trying to balance the push for austerity, fighting poverty and the erosion of steady, full-time jobs.Read more
Sherry Mendowegan has accomplished a lot in the past six months. The mother-of-two bought her first vehicle and graduated with her high school diploma in March.
"Next is my college, post-secondary, and then hopefully I get some work," she told HuffPost Canada.
Going to college would have been out of reach for Mendowegan even last year. But as a participant in Ontario's basic income pilot program, she and her husband, Dan, can now afford the tuition. She starts at Thunder Bay's Confederation College in September to study office administration.Read more
The Lindsay Advocate
As of last week about 2,000 Lindsay residents will be receiving money under the Ontario Basic Income Pilot program. That’s about 10 per cent of its population.
Government spokesperson, George Mason, says that about 4,000 participants will be receiving basic income in total across the three Ontario pilot locations, with an approximate breakdown of 1,000 participants in the Hamilton, Brantford and Brant County location; 1,000 in Thunder Bay and the surrounding area; and 2,000 in Lindsay.Read more
The Lindsay Advocate
In the three cities in Ontario where basic income is being tested – which includes Lindsay – there are still about 1,200 open spots for lower income people.
If you’re working or own your own business but just not earning enough, or if you’re on Ontario Works or disability, you might be eligible.
Potential basic income recipients must live in Lindsay and have been living there for at least the past 12 months. As well, you must be:
- 18 to 64 years old (for the entire duration of the three-year study)
- living on a low income (under $34,000 per year if you’re single or under $48,000 per year if you’re a couple)
Julia Taylor is the proud new owner of Country Cupboard in Fenelon Falls, a health and bulk food store that has been a community staple for 35 years in the village.
Her belief is that it couldn’t have happened without a kind of ‘basic income’ that she counted on back in 2012 when her first child was born – the Canada Child Benefit.Read more
The Lindsay Advocate
A Lindsay woman who has been receiving a basic income for the past three months says her life has taken a turn for the better – including an improvement in her mental health.
Barb Munro was on the Ontario Disability Support Program (ODSP) for depression and mental illness, before deciding to apply for basic income a few months ago under the new pilot set up by the Province.
Since her acceptance into the program, it has doubled her income to just over $1,800 a month.
“Even mentally I feel better,” says Munro, “because I know I still have some money in my bank account” later in the month.Read more
The Lindsay Advocate
While a Lindsay’s woman’s life is being changed for the better with basic income, she wishes the Province would also assign case workers for those who are used to having a human face in their corner.
Jennifer Brooke, a young woman who previously received income from the Ontario Disability Support Program (ODSP), made the jump to Lindsay’s basic income pilot last October, getting her first cheque on Nov. 25 – and it’s really making a positive impact in her life.
She went from receiving about $1,150 a month on ODSP to $1,925 a month on basic income.Read more
Jasmine Bellwood is a young Lindsay mother with a part-time job and full-time worries. Her worries are mainly about providing for her 15-month-old son.
She’s also anxious about doing this brief interview but then relents when The Lindsay Advocate offers to change her name.
Bellwood (not her real name) is about to go inside Celebrations in Lindsay to apply for basic income, one of the first open enrollment sessions the Province is holding, while her boyfriend, the boy’s father, takes care of their son.Read more
Basic income open enrollment sessions begin this week here in Lindsay, as well in Hamilton and Thunder Bay. If you haven’t registered and you think you might be ‘working poor’ or on Ontario Works, you should check out the simplified process.
The basic income pilot is an incredible opportunity. It not only has the capacity to change individual lives, but to create community-level change, too, especially in Lindsay where half the pilot participants live.Read more