The RSC Task Force on COVID-19

Renewing the Social Contract:
Economic Recovery in Canada from COVID-19

*** 17 December 2020 ***

In April 2020, The Royal Society of Canada established a COVID-19 task force to equip Canadians with accurate information about our response and recovery to the pandemic. It was mandated to provide evidence-informed perspectives on major societal challenges in the response to and recovery from COVID-19. The top recommendation is for a Basic Income.

This report was published in December 2020. The following is from the preamble to the Executive Summary.

COVID-19 has exposed the inadequacy of Canada’s crisis response infrastructure and policies. But it has exposed much broader and deeper systemic problems that flow from how we have chosen to organize our society. We have discovered the scale and depth of the Canadian precariat— those individuals and households who live with combinations of insecure income with little or no savings to rely on, employment, housing and residency which make for a profoundly and relentlessly insecure life. COVID-19 has shown us how the unintended creation of the precariat, through decades-long pursuit of lower labour costs, has created a large pool of individuals who simply cannot afford to follow policies that are essential for the good of society. COVID-19 has exposed the reality that our society and economy are two sides of the same coin.

The full Executive Summary can be found here.

The full Report can be found here.