With only four days to go to sign up for the Ontario Basic Income Pilot, a Provincial spokesperson says recipients of basic income shouldn’t feel there will be a hassle in returning to their previous program, such as Ontario Works or disability.
In the three cities in Ontario where basic income is being tested – which includes Lindsay – there are still about 1,200 open spots for lower income people.
If you’re working or own your own business but just not earning enough, or if you’re on Ontario Works or disability, you might be eligible.
As basic income enrollments continue in Lindsay and two other Ontario cities, one key trend seems to be emerging – the so-called ‘working poor’ are the majority of applicants who are flocking to the Province’s new Ontario pilot.
Jasmine Bellwood is a young Lindsay mother with a part-time job and full-time worries. Her worries are mainly about providing for her 15-month-old son.
She’s also anxious about doing this brief interview but then relents when The Lindsay Advocate offers to change her name.
The leader of one of Lindsay’s key employment agencies, Carol Timlin of Victoria County Career Services (VCCS), says the basic income pilot is a fantastic opportunity for Lindsay.
Executive Director Carol Timlin says part of their role at VCCS is to show people how to leverage the skills they have, and to steer them toward picking up new skills. She says that should become easier with a basic income as a financial floor to draw upon when necessary.
“It’s a great opportunity and I’m pleased the pilot is here,” Timlin tells The Lindsay Advocate.
Member of Provincial Parliament Laurie Scott says she is certain that as incomes increase under a basic income, or through finding a better job, this will lead to improved health for Lindsay-area residents.
The Progressive Conservative MPP for Haliburton-Kawartha Lakes-Brock says she is “glad Lindsay was chosen” and that she welcomes the basic income pilot.