A small but passionate group of people came together in Halifax on Saturday to call for a guaranteed basic income, creating a social safety net that catches everyone.
Basic Income Nova Scotia (BIG-NS) held the rally at Grand Parade to mark International Basic Income Day, with members creating signs and chalk drawings to draw attention to their message.
Mandy Kay-Raining Bird, the group’s chair, said social assistance rates in Nova Scotia are too low and people using the program still fall “well, well below” the poverty line.
“Which is why they live with such misery, and which is why the impact on their physical health and their mental health has been shown to be so dramatic,” she said.
The current model also has plenty of obstacles and many requirements that are “unnecessary,” said Kay-Raining Bird. She said those on assistance are treated as though they can’t be trusted.
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