Test guaranteed income in Windsor, says anti-poverty group

Windsor is the ideal community for testing a guaranteed income pilot project, according to Pathway to Potential director Adam Vasey.
Adam Vasey, the director of Pathway to Potential, plans to lobby the provincial government to bring a guaranteed income pilot project to Windsor. (Aadel Haleem/CBC)

An anti-poverty group wants the province to test out its guaranteed-income plan in Windsor.

The city would be an ideal setting for the concept that is currently being discussed by both the provincial and federal governments, according to Pathway to Potential director Adam Vasey.

Talking with Windsor Morning host Tony Doucette, Vasey cited a list of poverty issues that could be addressed by increasing people's income.

The city continues its lengthy struggle with unemployment, while an estimated 44,000 people live in poverty, Vasey explained.

"We have some of the most significant challenges of any city in this province right now," he said.

Lobbying for Windsor

Pathway to Potential officials will be reaching out to the province to inquire about bringing a pilot project to Windsor.

The Ontario government has promised to launch a program of basic income that it says "could build on the success of minimum wage policies," according to budget documents tabled last month.

The federal government is also talking about the concept. A Liberal-dominated parliamentary committee called on the Trudeau government to explore the idea of guaranteeing people a minimum income in a pre-budget report tabled in Ottawa on Friday.

Vasey applauds politicians for looking at livable wages, saying it could save the government money by eliminating costly health problems.

"If you provide people with an adequate income, that's going to take care of a whole host of problems that currently cost our society immensely, specifically health-care costs," he said. "It's time for us to start thinking differently about poverty and how we deal with it because the current system is broken."


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