7.21.2012

rtod: a town without poverty. it happened in canada.

Revolutionary thought of the day:
Initially, the Mincome program was conceived as a labour market experiment. The government wanted to know what would happen if everybody in town received a guaranteed income, and specifically, they wanted to know whether people would still work.

It turns out they did.

Only two segments of Dauphin's labour force worked less as a result of Mincome - new mothers and teenagers. Mothers with newborns stopped working because they wanted to stay at home longer with their babies. And teenagers worked less because they weren't under as much pressure to support their families.

The end result was that they spent more time at school and more teenagers graduated. Those who continued to work were given more opportunities to choose what type of work they did.

. . . .

In the period that Mincome was administered, hospital visits dropped 8.5 per cent. Fewer people went to the hospital with work-related injuries and there were fewer emergency room visits from car accidents and domestic abuse. There were also far fewer mental health visits.

From "A Town Without Poverty? Canada's only experiment in guaranteed income finally gets reckoning by Vivian Belik in The Dominion
Many thanks to M@ for this fascinating piece of Canadian history. It can be done. It can be done again.

3 comments:

Kev said...

Hi Laura if you are interested in reading more on Basic Livable Income (BLI) try reading this fine blog http://www.livableincome.org/

Advocates have moved from the term Guaranteed Annual Income (GAI) for fear that governments would implement an income supplement program at levels that wouldn't adequately address the issues.

laura k said...

Thank you, Kev!

Richard Holmes said...

I wonder if my friend who's an accident lawyer Suffolk county would believe that "no work-related injuries" claim. Seems too good to be true.