A guaranteed basic income program is no substitute for a good employment insurance program
By Diane Bellemare, Ph. D. and Senator of Quebec. Published in The Hill Times on May 4, 2020.
EI is and remains the best policy choice to encourage a sustainable labour market integration, occupational and labour mobility, and the protection of a decent standard of living.
The federal government has responded to critical needs by adopting the Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB) which provides $2,000 per month for people experiencing significant income loss due to COVID-19, as well as the 75 per cent wage subsidy which enables businesses affected by this crisis to maintain an employment relationship with their employees.
These measures respond to emergency needs related to an unprecedented crisis, but they also reflect the major shortcomings of the Canadian Employment Insurance plan (EI). Some hope to see the CERB become permanent and universal and form the basis of a guaranteed basic income program (GBI).
Read the Op-Ed here.