Canada: Basic income proposed by more than half of Manitoba’s political parties

According to the latest data, 20,8% of Manitobans live below the poverty line. This is one of the highest rates of poverty in the country. For the first time, three of Manitoba’s major political parties have announced their support for basic income.

So far, the Green Party of Manitoba, the Manitoba Liberal Party and the Manitoba NDP have each proposed a form of basic income as part of their campaign platforms. Only the Progressive Conservative Party of Manitoba has yet to release a plan.

“A basic income ensures everyone has the ability to afford basic needs like clothing, shelter and food,” said Paul Walsh, chair of Basic Income Manitoba. “Everyone has the right to live a life with dignity.”

Manitoba was home to one of the first basic income pilot projects. The Mincome experiment, situated in Dauphin, Winnipeg, and a few smaller towns in the 1970s, proved to have positive impacts on health, education and social inclusion. Other pilot projects have been conducted in Ontario (stopped midway), Finland, the Netherlands and elsewhere.

Basic Income Manitoba, a local non-profit organization, has launched a petition calling on elected and re-elected MLAs in Manitoba to study, evaluate and research the implementation of basic income in the province.

“We have launched this campaign to fight for change in the way poverty reduction is handled in this province. Basic income is a compassionate and cost-effective response to gaps in our current social systems,” said Walsh.

The petition will be presented to the legislature following the election on September 10th, 2019.

About Andre Coelho

André Coelho has written 365 articles.

Activist. Engineer. Musician. For the more beautiful world our hearts know it's possible.

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.


  • Darin Scott Lessner

    Don’t think people deserve money to sit on their asses for free money. You need to make an income

    • That is a fine argument against anyone inheriting money.

    • Steve Thomas

      Who decides what is “deserving” behaviour. And why do you “need to make an income”. What is so beneficial about the process that it justifies deepening insecurity and accelerating climate change?

    • Melissa Honke

      hello there news I’m a person with an IDEA with this basic income .. I like the factor of this but with.. why are we experiment s .. we as people are not Ginny pigs.. that MONEY as the basic income SHOULD only be used for the Poor.. and only for the Poor and the poor working class.. this is a great thing .. but ONLY SHOULD BE able to get better as we go .. but the experiment thing this should be permanent.. on BASIC needs.. and so that’s what I think.. I like this .. alot.. I THINK this will do good for all.. poor CLASS.. and only.. your truly..

  • Dovydas

    Ideally, basic income is needed all over the world. It’s almost 2020 and it’s embarrassing that we still leave people behind in fear of being homeless, barely scraping by. It creates unecessarry suffering and squanders human potential. Humans ARE part of our own environment. So by helping others, we create a better world for all.

    • Maebelle

      Very well stated! And you are spot on that it is an embarrassment to have not taken steps to make sure all people are not left behind without any means to basic dignities such as clean water, food, clothing and decent shelter.

  • Brian

    Great response to idleness. The pessimistic view that a UBI would create idleness is completely unfounded and only proves the ignorance and unread boorishness of the author. In its entirety, a UBI has proven only that full time employment would remain steady and create a spike in both part-time employment and entrepreneurship. If it can be done in Namibia, it should prove successful everywhere there are humans. The most compelling argument comes out the 16th century. It argues that we are the owners, equally, of this world we live in. Yet, we all don’t benefit from the spoils of our planet.

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