An Open Letter to Premier Ford and Minister MacLeod on Basic Income
We, collectively, represent the principal investigators, research teams and stakeholder groups behind several distinct basic income experiments underway in Finland, Scotland, the Netherlands, the USA, Spain, Kenya and India. We profoundly regret that you chose to cancel the Ontario Basic Income Guarantee Experiment prematurely.
Each of our experimental designs is somewhat different, reflecting our own political and social context. Together these experiments have the potential to produce data upon which evidence-informed social policy might be based. Ontario represented a key piece of the analysis, and has been watched closely by policymakers and researchers around the globe.
We are deeply concerned that the experiment was cancelled with no concurrent announcement that you intend to continue the promised stipends for the full period of the planned experiment. It appears to us that 4,000 vulnerable research subjects will have made decisions to improve their lives based on participation in the experiment, only to have the promise broken. As you are no doubt aware, standards for the ethical conduct of social experiments involving humans have evolved significantly in recent years. Not only is the cancellation inconsistent with international best practices, but it violates your own Canadian policy for the ethical conduct of experiments involving humans.
Canada’s continuing leadership on balanced and humane economic policy has always mattered deeply to the international community. We ask you to reconsider. The world is watching.