There is certainly no doubt that the 2021 Federal Budget will provide some help to some people, depending on their situation. That’s the problem.
What the budget needed to do was set the foundation for a basic income, a common-sense, income security system that includes everyone, provides stability for people and the capacity to move themselves and our country forward. A system that is fair and effective.
The budget makes barely a dent in the widening gap between those who are managing well, some even benefitting from the pandemic, and those who are not. Many Canadians in so many different situations are struggling to carry the burden of keeping themselves, their families, their businesses, their health and their lives together to keep society functioning for all of us.
Our governments seem to treat the economic insecurity and blocked aspirations of Canadians as a temporary problem that vaccines will fix. It isn’t. We need bold, visionary policy.
Basic income champions, political party members and ordinary Canadians have to keep leading the push. We must gear up now to make basic income an election issue that can’t be ignored.
We at BICN are immensely grateful for everything that basic income supporters have done already. Here’s a list of potential actions to start or keep doing. If you have creative ideas for further actions, all the better!
- If you have not already done so, sign on to petitions calling for a basic income and encourage everyone you know to sign on too. Here are three: (https://www.leadnow.ca/basic-income) (https://www.leahgazan.ca/basicincomemotion) (https://www.ubiworks.ca/basicincomebill (French version – https://www.ubiworks.ca/projetdeloi)
- I you are able, please donate to BICN to help fund a federal election strategy that we are building with other partners and allies.
- A personal call or letter to politicians and community leaders goes a long way. It matters to them what their constituents think. Tell them what a basic income would mean to you, your local area, your country.
- To up the volume, get the word out on social media. You can also contact your local radio, tv station, or newspaper. Tell them this issue matters and ask them to cover it.
- Bring people in your organizations or communities together for a virtual meeting, workshop or just conversation to raise awareness and understanding.