Canada must implement a Guaranteed Livable Income now, says Green MP Paul Manly

by Elizabeth May | September 17, 2020 9:44 am

September 17, 2020

NANAIMO, B.C.  – The Green Party of Canada calls on the federal government to implement a Guaranteed Livable Income without delay, as a part of its recovery measures to assist Canadians for the duration of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Tonight, Green caucus critic for families, children and social development, Paul Manly (MP, Nanaimo-Ladysmith), in collaboration with Coalition Canada, Basic Income will host a national town hall to discuss Guaranteed Livable Income. Mr. Manly will be joined by the Honourable Senator Kim Pate, and a panel of experts who will explain the basics, talk about the benefits, and break down some myths and misunderstandings.

“Thanks to early implementation of programs like CERB and CEWS, many Canadians were able to navigate the economic hardships triggered by the sudden lockdown measures,” said Manly. “Unfortunately, there were gaps in those programs that resulted in many people being left in need. Now, as we watch other countries struggling to cope with second waves of COVID-19, it is almost certain that Canada will experience a similar trajectory. We would do well to prepare the groundwork now to overhaul our social fiscal programs and combine them into one Guaranteed Livable Income. The first step is to provide a clear understanding of what exactly that would mean for Canadians and why we need it immediately to alleviate the hardship and suffering caused by the pandemic and the economic aftershock.”

Guaranteed Livable Income, or Basic Income, is not a new idea. The first Canadian pilot project, ‘Mincome’, was carried out in Manitoba in the 1970s, funded jointly by the Manitoba provincial government and Pierre Trudeau’s administration. More recently the Ontario Liberal government of Kathleen Wynne launched a basic income pilot project in 2016. Doug Ford’s Conservatives cancelled the project when they came to power in 2018. The Green Party of Canada included a Guaranteed Livable Income in its election platform in 2006, making it the first federal party to put forward this idea in Canada.

“It’s just common sense to have a Guaranteed Livable Income,” said Green Party Interim Leader Jo-Ann Roberts. “We must not forget that the looming threat posed by the climate emergency has not disappeared, but hovers underneath the urgency of the pandemic. We’ve called for this for years and it’s included in the Green Recovery Plan: Reimagining Our Future. At this critical juncture in history, ensuring that there is a safety net to protect all Canadians is essential. There is no justification for any delay.”

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For more information or to arrange an interview contact:

Laurie MacMillan

Communications Coordinator/Paul Manly

250-668-2732

laurie.macmillan@greenparty.ca

Rosie Emery

Press Secretary

613-562-4916×206

rosie.emery@greenparty.ca

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