Ontario moves forward with basic income pilot

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The province has appointed the Honourable Hugh Segal to provide advice on the design and implementation of a Basic Income Pilot in Ontario, as announced in the 2016 Budget.

Basic income, or guaranteed annual income, is a payment to eligible families or individuals that ensures a minimum level of income. Ontario will design and implement a pilot program to test the growing view that a basic income could help deliver income support more efficiently, while improving health, employment and housing outcomes for Ontarians.

As Special Advisor on Basic Income, Mr. Segal will draw on his expertise in Canadian and international models of basic income and consult with thought leaders to help Ontario design a pilot.

Mr. Segal will deliver a discussion paper to the province by the fall to help inform the design and implementation of the pilot, on a pro bono basis. The discussion paper will include advice about potential criteria for selecting target populations and/or locations, delivery models and advice about how the province could evaluate the results of the Basic Income Pilot. Ontario will undertake further engagement with experts, communities and other stakeholders as it moves towards design and implementation.

Supporting Ontarians through a Basic Income Pilot is part of the government’s economic plan to build Ontario up and deliver on its number-one priority to grow the economy and create jobs. The four-part plan includes investing in talent and skills, including helping more people get and create the jobs of the future by expanding access to high-quality college and university education. The plan is making the largest investment in public infrastructure in Ontario’s history and investing in a low-carbon economy driven by innovative, high-growth, export-oriented businesses. The plan is also helping working Ontarians achieve a more secure retirement.