Deputy Mayor John MacKenzie’s motion calling on the city to ask the federal and provincial government for a “guaranteed livable basic income” got unanimous support from the city council earlier this week.

A guaranteed livable basic income will be attached to a certain level of a market-based level of poverty, as opposed to a universal basic income. The funding for a basic income would not come from municipalities but from federal and potentially provincial government.

The motion says the impacts of poverty have placed “unsustainable pressure on [Saint John’s] limited resources to deliver necessary public services and social infrastructure supports as we struggle to keep up with the evolving needs of our community.”

It calls on the council to direct “the Office of the Mayor to write a letter to the Prime Minister, New Brunswick Members of Parliament and the Senate, the Premier of New Brunswick, Members of the Legislative Assembly of New Brunswick, and the Fundy Regional Service Commission, calling on these orders of government to work towards implementing a Guaranteed Livable Basic Income to eradicate poverty and homelessness, and ensure everyone has sufficient income to meet their basic needs.”

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