Archive for the ‘Social Security Debates’ Category

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Is ‘Left Over’ Food for ‘Left Behind’ People the Best We Can Do?

Monday, May 20th, 2019

Food banks operate as secondary food markets propping up ailing welfare systems… government must ensure domestic compliance under international law with its obligations to “respect, protect and fulfill” these rights ensuring food security for all. That means understanding food insecurity as a problem of income poverty. It must change the public conversation and political discourse from charity to human rights and social justice.

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The view from the ER: Ford is chopping up the safety net

Sunday, April 28th, 2019

On any given day, a small number of the patients seen in our ED are high-frequency users, many of whom have complex social concerns… Addressing… the problems of so many of my patients, requires real commitment from governments to support the social determinants of health – the social, economic and environmental factors that determine individual and population health. Instead, the government has promised cuts to public health, education, legal aid and social services.

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Why is retiring later a good idea? Because 65 is the new 55

Friday, April 19th, 2019

Canadian Institute of Actuaries suggests… Shifting the target retirement age for CPP and Old Age Security from 65 to 67, with a commensurate 14.4-per-cent boost in the monthly pension… Allowing Canadians to defer OAS and CPP until as late as 75, with a big boost in monthly payments as incentive… Encouraging employers to choose 67, rather than 65, as the target retirement date for new pension-plan members

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Ontario needs a minimum income floor

Wednesday, March 27th, 2019

… if you lower the benchmark, the number of people living in poverty invariably goes down… At the same time that Statistics Canada announced this good news story… Doug Ford’s cancellation of the pilot was regrettable, however, it is time we forget about pilots and move on to ensure everyone has a minimum income floor.

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Death knell for basic income: How participants will spend their last cheque

Monday, March 25th, 2019

The goal was to see if regular payments with few conditions would give people living in poverty the security and opportunity to reach their full potential. The project aimed to measure the basic income’s impact on food security, health, housing, education and employment. It was also testing whether a basic income would be a simpler and more economical way to deliver social assistance, a program mired in rules and bureaucracy.

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Basic income project improved lives, but ‘now it’s back to the food bank’

Monday, March 4th, 2019

Participants reported less stress and depression, fewer health problems and a greater ability to work, buy healthy food, upgrade their education and secure stable housing… Participants receive their last payment at the end of March — barely 18 months after most began receiving the extra money — and before the government was able to do any followup studies. The project’s goal was to determine whether regular, unconditional payments improve housing, health, education, employment and social outcomes for people living on social assistance or low-wage jobs in an efficient and non-stigmatizing way.

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Maybe now we can finally say it out loud — poverty is in decline

Wednesday, February 27th, 2019

… poverty tends to fall, and incomes to rise, in periods of economic growth… If the overall rate has dropped appreciably, it has fallen even more among children — especially welcome, given the lasting effects poverty can have on life chances. At nine per cent, it is down a third from just two years ago… That’s almost certainly due, at least in part, to the Liberals’ first and most significant policy reform: the rationalization of several existing child benefits and credits into a single income-tested Canada Child Benefit, with increased amounts going to low-income families.

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Ontario welfare changes far from being reforms

Sunday, January 27th, 2019

The government wants recipients of Ontario Works and ODSP to work. Curiously, it proposes substantially better financial incentives for people who are certified as disabled. On Ontario Works, the plan is to exempt the first $300 a month of earned income before any clawback, compared to the current $200. Beyond the basic exemption, the current clawback is 50 per cent. The proposal is to make it 75 per cent. That is an incentive to work?

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Ford fails to connect dots between the personal and the political

Tuesday, January 22nd, 2019

A million dollars of provincial funding that makes after-school activities possible in Toronto’s disadvantaged neighbourhoods has been cut… His government also cut a $3-million program to help young people with a developmental disability transition to adulthood… It’s a false economy… Doug Ford… can’t make the leap from wanting to help on a personal level to seeing the necessary role of government in assisting groups of people dealing with social problems.

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‘Humans are suffering’: Axing of basic income pilot project leaves trail of broken dreams

Tuesday, January 22nd, 2019

The Star and other media organizations have documented how participants have been able to eat healthier food, buy warm clothing, move into stable housing and enrol in college… In addition to the court challenge, mayors of the pilot communities, international researchers, the Hamilton and Thunder Bay Chambers of Commerce, 900 medical professionals and the CEOs of 120 Canadian companies have called on both Queen’s Park and Ottawa to continue the research project the remaining two years.

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