Time to Make Guaranteed Livable Income a Reality

For Immediate Release  - 15 July 2020, Ottawa

Senator Kim Pate today released the attached written statement outlining a perspective on what a national guaranteed livable income program could look like and achieve as a feasible, costed and imminent reality.

This statement follows on a report of the Standing Senate Committee on National Finance recommending in response to the COVID-19 pandemic that the “Government of Canada, with provinces, territories and Indigenous governments, give full, fair and priority consideration to a basic income guarantee.”

“The report of the National Finance Committee has reminded us of the human, social and economic importance of measuring how people are doing during this pandemic, especially those who have been disproportionately affected—women, children, institutionalized and elderly people, and essential workers,” said Senator Pate.

“The COVID-19 pandemic has brought into sharp relief the reality that government has a role in managing the economy. In this time of crisis, it was to the government that companies and people looked for help. COVID-19 has shown us the vital need to centre our economy on human health and well-being, and that our environment and biosphere respond positively when we do. This, and not solely the GDP, must be how we evaluate the success of our interventions.”

“If we govern according to the UN Sustainable Development Goals, if we ensure access to universally accessible healthcare and economic supports, if we stop rewarding countries for economic growth achieved at the expense of environmental degradation and exploitation of the most vulnerable that result in massive social, economic and health inequalities, Canada can and will lead the world in global recovery efforts,” concluded Senator Pate.

"Guaranteed livable income will help us move toward this goal. I am eager to work with my all Parliamentary and community colleagues to make this more equal, more just, and more hopeful future a reality.”

*** Read the statement here.