For about a decade now, the charity GiveDirectly has been distributing cash straight to poor residents in sub-Saharan Africa, starting in Kenya and expanding later to Uganda, Malawi, Rwanda, Liberia, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, and Morocco.
The organization was founded by economists, and has been studying the impact of its programs from the get-go. But the research has focused narrowly on recipients: Were they better off, the same, or worse off than people not getting cash?Read more
A year after Doug Ford broke his first election promise by axing the province’s basic income pilot project, the future remains uncertain for Ontarians struggling to make ends meet.
The three-year, $150-million experiment was studying whether unconditional cash payments are a better way to support vulnerable workers and improve health and education outcomes for people living in poverty, including those on social assistance.
With a sample size of 4,000 adults in three test sites — Hamilton-Brant, Thunder Bay and Lindsay — and another 2,000 acting as a control group, it was one of the largest and well-designed studies of its kind.Read more
By Alan Gummo
The ‘Witches of Salem’ refers to a group of people who were believed to be witches, that is, possessed by the Devil, in Salem, Massachusetts in the 1690s.
The witch stereotype became very popular and demanded a public policy response; it drove the establishment of a specialized tribunal to deal with it. Some twenty people were put to death because of it. It has since come to symbolize injustice. I could mention other policies based on other stereotypes, but there’s no need to belabour the point by dwelling on other disasters.Read more