News; News & Events

ONTARIO Canada: polls show increase in support for Basic Income

A Forum Research poll, released March 26th, reveals that support for a basic income has increased in the Canadian province of Ontario.

According to the report, “In a random sampling of public opinion taken by the Forum Poll among 1225 Ontario voters, the plurality, 4-in-10, approve of an Ontario basic income to replace social assistance and other provincial support payments (41%). One third disapprove of the idea (33%) and as many as a quarter have no opinion (26%).”

According to the Huffington Post, approval of Basic Income in Ontario has risen from 27 to 41 percent since 2012 and disapproval has dropped from 39 to 31 percent so that a plurality now supports basic income (the rest being unsure).

Some of the articles below (e.g. Huffington Post) include comparisons to previous polls.

References and Reports:

Forum Research, “Plurality approves of basic incomeThe Forum Poll, March 30, 2016
Daniel Tencer “Approval For Basic Income Jumps In Ontario.” The Huffington Post Canada, 03/30/2016
Andrew Russell. “Support for guaranteed minimum income rises in Ontario, poll finds.Global News, March 30, 2016
Robert Benzi. “Ontarians warming to guaranteed minimum income, poll suggests.” The Toronto Star. Mar 30 2016

Ontario Finance Minister Charles Sousa, left, delivers the Ontario 2016 budget next to Premier Kathleen Wynne, right, at Queen's Park in Toronto on Thursday, February 25, 2016.

Ontario Finance Minister Charles Sousa, left, delivers the Ontario 2016 budget next to Premier Kathleen Wynne, right, at Queen’s Park in Toronto on Thursday, February 25, 2016. -THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette via Global News

About Karl Widerquist

Karl Widerquist has written 950 articles.

Karl Widerquist is an Associate Professor of political philosophy at SFS-Qatar, Georgetown University, specializing in distributive justice—the ethics of who has what. Much of his work involves Universal Basic Income (UBI). He is a co-founder of the U.S. Basic Income Guarantee Network (USBIG). He served as co-chair of the Basic Income Earth Network (BIEN) for 7 years, and now serves as vice-chair. He was the Editor of the USBIG NewsFlash for 15 years and of the BIEN NewsFlash for 4 years. He is a cofounder of BIEN’s news website, Basic Income News, the main source of just-the-facts reporting on UBI worldwide. He is a cofounder and editor of the journal Basic Income Studies, the only academic journal devoted to research on UBI. Widerquist has published several books and many articles on UBI both in academic journals and in the popular media. He has appeared on or been quoted by many major media outlets, such as NPR’s On Point, NPR’s Marketplace, PRI’s the World, CNBC, Al-Jazeera, 538, Vice, Dissent, the New York Times, Forbes, the Financial Times, and the Atlantic Monthly, which called him “a leader of the worldwide basic income movement.” Widerquist holds two doctorates—one in Political Theory form Oxford University (2006) and one in Economics from the City University of New York (1996). He has published seven books, including Prehistoric Myths in Modern Political Philosophy (Edinburgh University Press 2017, coauthored by Grant S. McCall) and Independence, Propertylessness, and Basic Income: A Theory of Freedom as the Power to Say No (Palgrave Macmillan 2013). He has published more than a twenty scholarly articles and book chapters. Most Karl Widerquist’s writing is available on his “Selected Works” website ( More information about him is available on his BIEN profile and on Wikipedia. He writes the blog "the Indepentarian" for Basic Income News.

The views expressed in this Op-Ed piece are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent the view of Basic Income News or BIEN. BIEN and Basic Income News do not endorse any particular policy, but Basic Income News welcomes discussion from all points of view in its Op-Ed section.

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