If it takes a village to raise a child, a town can also come together to help feed kids through the summer months. This is what is happening in Lindsay since summer 2018, where an innovative Summer Outreach Lunch Program is providing healthy bagged lunches to children.
Poverty costs Ontario somewhere between $27.1 – $33 billion each year. Feed Ontario’s most recent report, The Cost of Poverty in Ontario, offers an explanation as to why and how “poverty reduction is not only possible – it pays off.”
While governments estimate the cost of poverty by calculating dollars spent on programs and services for the poor, this report locates the cost of poverty in the increased health and justice system expenses incurred, and loss of tax revenue and by maintaining people in a state of poverty. Those living on low income experience poorer health for a host of reasons, including inadequate housing, less access to medicine, and less access to quality food. The result? An estimated cost of $3.9 billion to our health care system.
The Lindsay Advocate will be hosting a free event on Oct. 5 in Lindsay, featuring retired Senator Art Eggleton who will speak on why Canada needs a basic income — and how to get there.
Eggleton has been one of the basic income movement’s greatest Canadian champions. He remains Toronto’s longest serving mayor in history and was well-known for his progressive approach to social issues in the city.
Canada is in the grip of an affordable housing crisis. Large municipalities like Toronto are especially hard hit with primary vacancy rates as low as 1.1%. The average cost of a one bedroom apartment has nearly doubled from $1,400 a month in 2009 to $2,400 in 2019. Many working class Torontonians are paying 60% or more of their incomes on rent — and homelessness is becoming more common as a result.
Low income people like me are even more adversely affected by the affordable housing crisis than working class people are.
Julia Taylor knows all about the power of a basic income, although she wasn’t a part of the Ontario Basic Income Pilot that occurred in Lindsay, Hamilton, and Thunder Bay area. Taylor’s ‘basic income’ was her Canada Child Benefit, something nearly four million Canadians receive.
“Receiving that benefit topped up our income so I didn’t have to go back to work (right away) — it was my guaranteed basic income,” Taylor says.
Like basic income policy, the Canada Child Benefit comes with no strings attached for families.
Twenty-four chronically homeless people in our area now have a home, thanks to the City of Kawartha Lakes and and Kawartha Lakes Housing Corporation. But since many of them are struggling with addictions, hundreds of readers recently questioned on social media whether they were deserving of accommodation.
The story, ‘New housing complex should be for rehab, not ‘condoning drugs’: Woman’s petition,’ was read by thousands with the majority of readers on social media holding the opinion that these 24 people should be ‘clean’ first before being given the keys to a brand new one bedroom apartment.
At the September 10 Committee of the Whole meeting, Council heard a presentation outlining the targets for the next decade being proposed by Housing Services.
Hope Lee, Manager of Housing, presented the targets, noting that the municipality in its role as Service Manager for the City and the County is in the process of refreshing the Housing and Homelessness Plan 2020-2029 and will bring the refreshed plan to Council in November. A committee has created a draft plan, completed multiple forms of public consultations and have published a comprehensive needs assessment. Keep Reading
The class action lawsuit launched by four people from Lindsay who were once on the Ontario Basic Income Pilot is moving ahead with a late June, 2020 court date.
The Toronto law firm of Cavalluzzo LLP was in Lindsay yesterday to hold two public sessions in order to update people who were on basic income and to let them know the current status of the class action lawsuit.
As a federal election draws nearer the Basic Income Canada Network (BICN) is urging all federal candidates to consider a basic income as a game-changing solution to income insecurity.
The letter to all federal candidates begins by tackling the issue of financial insecurity head-on.
“As the 2019 federal election approaches, many issues will be debated. A great many of them are linked to income insecurity, which manifests itself in the form of costly symptoms, like anxiety, illness and societal unrest. If the underlying problem is about income, however, then the solution must be, too – or it will not get better.”
Vera Fillion lost her 23-year-old son nearly six years ago from a Fentanyl overdose. Now her partner is hooked on hard drugs once again, after he moved into an apartment at the brand new 68 Lindsay Street North building, at the corner of Queen Street.
She calls the new housing “a terrible place to be” and says it “smells like death.”
“It feels like they got this building to get the worst of the worst together,” she tells the Advocate.
“The girls wander the hallways like zombies…covered in open wounds from crystal meth. My partner got a room in there – he went in sober and now he’s back on drugs.”