It’s time for a basic income
Today, artists, writers, technicians and performers are calling on Prime Minister Trudeau to create a permanent basic income guarantee.
The pandemic’s wrath on lives has been swift. Millions are still out of work, venues shuttered, and livelihoods lost. In this new precarious reality, poverty can become a reality for all of us, abruptly, without warning.
“As stakeholders of the arts and culture sector, we ask you to give Canadians the chance not only to survive, but to live.”
“A Basic Income Guarantee would build on existing programs, including CERB, and provide financial security to meet people’s basic needs, regardless of their work status.”
This public letter, signed and endorsed by many of the largest arts and culture organizations in Canada and many prominent talents, calls on the government to think outside the box and implement a “basic income program that guarantees an income floor to anyone in need.”
In the pandemic’s wake, Canada can rise from the disease, hardships, and ruptures in social behavior with a basic income.
“The opportunity for change is here and now”Letter’s co-authors: Craig Berggold, Zainub Verjee and Clayton Windatt.
“It’s time for a basic income,” say Canadian talent from coast to coast to coast: from the North’s Gwaandak Theatre, the Acadian artists in New Brunswick, the Conseil québécois du théâtre; Toronto’s South Asian Visual Arts Centre; Alberta’s celebrated Kehewin Native Dance Theatre; I.A.T.S.E.’s stage and film technicians; the Canadian Federation of Musicians, the visual artists of CARFAC, the francophone Fédération culturelle canadienne-française, the Canadian Actors’ Equity, to opera singer Adrianne Pieczonka, O.C., writer Judy Rebick, filmmaker John Greyson, and many more…
George Elliot Clarke, the 7th Parliamentary/Canadian Poet Laureate composed “On Basic Income” for our campaign. The poem’s opening lines provide a dark glimpse of the solitude and unexpected hardship, through no fault of their own, felt by many Canadians: