Ontario Seeking Input on Basic Income Pilot

Posted on November 3, 2016 in Social Security Policy Context

Ontario.ca – mcss/en – Province Launching Consultations on Innovative Way to Deliver Supports
November 3, 2016.   Ministry of Community and Social Services

Ontario is seeking public input to help inform the design of a basic income pilot, which is an innovative new approach to providing income security.

The pilot would test whether a basic income is a more effective way of lifting people out of poverty and improving health, housing and employment outcomes. Through the consultations, Ontario is seeking input from across the province, including from people with lived experience, municipalities, experts and academics. The province will also work with Indigenous partners to tailor a culturally appropriate engagement process that reflects the advice and unique perspective of First Nations, urban Indigenous, Métis and Inuit communities.

The province is consulting on key questions, including: who should be eligible, where the pilot should take place, what the basic income level should be and how best to evaluate it. The consultations will be guided, in part, by a discussion paper by the Hon. Hugh Segal, Finding a Better Way: A Basic Income Pilot Project for Ontario, and will run from November 2016 to January 2017. People can participate by:

– Attending a regional in-person discussion hosted by the province.
– Commenting online at ontario.ca/basicincome.

Exploring innovative ways to deliver supports and services is part of our government’s plan to create jobs, grow our economy and help people in their everyday lives.

Quick Facts
– Finland, the Netherlands and Kenya are also looking at developing pilot projects that test the idea of a basic or guaranteed annual income.
– Y-Combinator, a California technology company has announced it will be piloting a Basic Income project that is expected to run for five years.
– The government will prepare a final report on what we heard during the consultations, and introduce a plan for the pilot by April, 2017.
– Organizations interested in hosting their own basic income pilot consultations can go to ontario.ca/basicincome for the consultation guide.

Additional Resources
Join the online consultations:  < https://www.ontario.ca/form/basic-income-pilot-public-survey?_ga=1.181859559.1910362208.1455648987 >

Read the summary of the Hon. Hugh Segal’s recommendations: < https://files.ontario.ca/mcss_basic_income_discussion_paper_exec_summary_english.pdf?_ga=1.144562293.1910362208.1455648987 >

About social services:  < http://www.mcss.gov.on.ca/en/mcss/ >

Dr. Helena Jaczek
“We are always looking for innovative, evidence-based solutions that can help us end poverty and improve public services to make them simpler, more efficient and more effective for the people who need them the most. This pilot is an opportunity to test that approach, and we look forward to hearing as many views as possible, including from people with lived experience, community partners and experts, to ensure we get it right.”

Dr. Helena Jaczek
Minister of Community and Social Services

“We know that many Ontarians are still living in poverty and that we must continue to look for ways to address this challenge. A basic income pilot is an innovative, evidence-generating tool that will help us identify what’s working, measure our progress and expand our toolbox as we explore better ways to build a foundation for Ontarians to reach their full potential.”

Hon. Chris Ballard
Minister of Housing and the Minister Responsible for the Poverty Reduction Strategy

< https://news.ontario.ca/mcss/en/2016/11/ontario-seeking-input-on-basic-income-pilot.html >

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One Response to “Ontario Seeking Input on Basic Income Pilot”

  1. It is great to see that this pilot project is considering the perspective of First Nations, urban Indigenous, Métis and Inuit communities in Ontario. It is absolutely necessary to create a specific engagement process that is culturally appropriate for these communities, as they experience poverty at alarming rates. I am hoping this project also takes into consideration the voices of racialized immigrants in Ontario. After all, they are at a higher risk of poverty than many other populations in the province and can offer unique advice about basic income and their experience of poverty (Block & Edward-Galabuzi, 2011). It can be hard to incorporate their voices in the design process of a project like this, with many factors making it difficult for this population to come forward. For example, language barriers and marginalization from the greater community can play a role in a racialized immigrant’s ability to access input methods for this project. Providing information about the project to Immigration Services in areas where discussions about the project are taking place is necessary. This way, racialized immigrants have a better chance of finding out about this type of study. Some members of this group are still adjusting to speaking the official languages of Canada. Many sources covering this project are only offered in French or English. It is worthwhile to consider that not all populations affected by poverty can volunteer to take part in planning this project for reasons like this. Racialized immigrants are also a marginalized group and can be isolated from their communities in many ways. This making engagement in this project difficult for them, as the focus of it is the effects that the basic income can have on the community as a whole. Therefore, a specific engagement process should also be designed for this group. All groups who experience poverty should have equal access to participation in this pilot project so that their demographic can be reflected in its design, this way their voice can be heard.

    Block, S., & Edward-Galabuzi, G. (2011, March). Canada’s colour coded labour
    market. Retrieved November 5, 2016, from Canada Without Poverty website:


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