income support

income support

Income support programs provide assistance to people with low or no income. Despite the constitutional role of the provinces in providing social assistance, Canada's social safety net is a patchwork of programs across jurisdictions. The poorest 20 per cent of Canada's households, rely heavily on income support and received nearly 40 per cent of all government income security benefits. Current income support programs include:
Federal Programs


[+] Income support and federal transfers

social safety net, poverty, ((unemployment),

Position: Increasing wages causes inflation

Prices would rise. If you set the minimum wage to be equal to that minimum poverty level and don't put in some form of price control - the costs are going to be passed on to the consumer and then the guaranteed income level will have to rise again and a vicious cycle will be created.


If this is the case, then the prices we currently pay are artificially low. Low wages subsidise the low prices of goods and services. Full-cost accounting requires that the true costs - including costs of providing a living wage to the workers - are reflected in the prices offered to consumers.

RH: our prices are low due to lack of full cost accounting. and this arguement does not weaken "Increasing wages causes inflation". labour cost is the greatest determinant in inflation.

Position: promote income support programs.

There is no evidence that meeting people's basic needs independent of their income is a disincentive to work. Numerous studies show that people who go off social assistance programs and enter the working world report ambivalent results in terms of their financial situation, but are happier with their lives when working.

A survey by the City of Toronto Neighbourhood and Community Services in 2001 found that "only 43% of respondents felt things had improved financially since leaving {Ontario Works, the name of the welfare program} compared to 54% who believed their life was better.

This study found that people "felt better off since giving up welfare but two-thirds reported trouble paying for their food or shelter at least once since giving up provincial income assistance."

[+] Position: impliment Basic Income

[+] Position: create a Guaranteed Income Supplement for all.

[+] Position: minimize the role of income support programs in favour of alternatives.

[+] Position: Provide for Basic needs

[+] Position: Able-bodied adults with no dependents should be understood as a separate category from others.

[+] Position: Free money makes people lazy.

[+] Position: Income support exacerbates consumerism

sources and resources


Who benefits from Canada's Income support programs? - CCSD

"The Growing Gap: A report on growing inequality between the rich and poor in Canada", by Armine Yalnizyan, Centre for Social Justice, Toronto

Poverty by Postal Code, United Way, Toronto

Discovering the Bright Warrior: Confessions of a Social Activist. Joan Johannsen