Marie Burge - The Guardian
The P.E.I. Working Group for a Livable Income welcomes the recent motion No. 36 passed in the P.E.I. legislature, putting Basic Income Guarantee back on the government’s agenda.
This effort should produce more than just another report collecting dust. For this to be progress, the proposed Special Committee of the Legislature must see their mandate as the creation of a Basic Income Guarantee program for Prince Edward Island. Otherwise, their December 2019 report could be a rehashing of recommendations, which the working group has presented many times to former governments. At the passing of motion No. 36, Social Housing and Development Minister Ernie Hudson emphasized that a lot of work has already been done on poverty in P.E.I. He seemed to refer only to work for the 2018 Poverty Reduction Strategy rather than that already done on Basic Income Guarantee.
We believe that the work on Basic Income Guarantee must include a statement of principles, such as that developed for P.E.I. by our working group in consultation with the community.Read more
With a federal election coming and all parties in the P.E.I. Legislature agreed, Canada's leading basic income advocate says this is the right time for the province to lobby Ottawa for money.
Former Canadian senator Hugh Segal said with 3.5 million Canadians living in poverty Ottawa has a responsibility to deal with any province that wants to reform the welfare system. Segal is familiar with the Island, having started his career in the office of David MacDonald, an MP for the western P.E.I. riding of Egmont.Read more
Basic Income Guarantee (BIG), as a public policy and program, is designed to respond to the belief that all people have the collective right to an income which allows them to live in good health and with dignity.
The P.E.I. Working Group for a Livable Income works on Basic Income Guarantee as its central long-term program. Our work has involved consultations with the P.E.I. community, lobbying public decision-makers and maintaining contact with the national movements for Basic Income Guarantee. Meanwhile, we give close attention to the many ongoing conditions of low income in Prince Edward Island.Read more
P.E.I.'s Green Party released its full platform for the coming provincial election Monday afternoon. The platform includes about $30 million in new spending, with the biggest chunk — $10 million — going toward increasing social assistance rates.
"We acknowledge poverty is a complex issue, but envision fewer people living in poverty by immediately increasing access to existing programs and services," the platform said. "I believe that Islanders want a government that presents a pathway toward a practical, harmonious, and affordable future," said Green Party Leader Peter Bevan-Baker.Read more
An expert on the subject of the basic income guarantee, a proposed social program that would see all adults receive a regular payment from government, will be delivering two lectures in P.E.I. this week.
Evelyn Forget, an economist at the University of Manitoba, has conducted research on basic income guarantee programs in Canada and around the world. She is also the author of a new book, “Basic Income for Canadians: The Key to a Healthier, Happier, more Secure Life for All”.Read more
One day, a man was walking along a beach that was littered with thousands of starfish that had been washed ashore by the high tide. As he walked he came upon a young boy who was eagerly throwing the starfish back into the ocean, one by one.
Puzzled, the man looked at the boy and asked what he was doing. Without looking up from his task, the boy simply replied, “I’m saving these starfish, Sir.”
The man chuckled.
“But there must be tens of thousands of starfish on this beach. I’m afraid you won’t really be able to make much of a difference.”Read more
The P.E.I. Legislature agreed unanimously Tuesday to have the province work with the federal government in hopes of setting up a basic-income pilot project on the Island.
The idea is to guarantee a minimum amount of money in government support each month to those living in poverty.
Green Party Leader Peter Bevan-Baker put forward the motion, which was supported by all parties.
Bevan-Baker said a successful pilot project could reduce poverty, improve health and mental health, increase educational attainment, reduce crime and act as a response to increased automation and outsourcing.Read more
According to CBC News, Prince Edward Island's "help wanted" listings for April to June 2015 "offered the lowest average hourly wages in the country, according to a recent Statistics Canada report."
They also report that "the wages offered in 1,500 job listings on P.E.I. in the second quarter, and found the money averaged $13.70 an hour. That's almost $2 less than the average for jobs listed for the same time period in neighbouring New Brunswick."Read more
By Roderick Benns
Publisher of Leaders and Legacies, a social purpose news site
Perhaps now, in the middle of a federal election, it would be a good time to stop pretending that we are helpless to eliminate poverty. In a nation as wealthy and as privileged as Canada, poverty is simply a social construction. It is the result of decisions we continue to make (or not make) as a society — and it is costing us dearly. Inequality breeds poorer health outcomes. It drains our economy. It compromises our moral purpose as one of the world’s leading nations.