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Ontario government considering minimum income pilot project

Ontario’s Liberal government is asking for public input on developing a pilot project to guarantee people a minimum income.

The consultation will involve questions such as who should be eligible, what the basic income level should be and what criteria should be established.

It will be based on a discussion paper produced by former senator Hugh Segal, who recommended a monthly income of $1,320 with another $500 for people with disabilities, to replace the Ontario Works and Ontario Disability Support Program.

He says the pilot should look at health outcomes for those involved as well as the life and career choices they make, education outcomes, work behaviour, changes in food security and impacts on their housing arrangements.

Segal says the governing principles should be that no one is worse off under the pilot and that participation is voluntary.

The government intends to have a plan ready for the pilot by April 2017.