New Report on Rethinking Social Assistance

A new report, published by the Mowat Centre, argues that patterns in Canada’s labour market are creating a growing number of Canadians with little or no attachment to our country’s social architecture. The report questions the extent to which Canada’s social architecture is suited to the new realities of work, including automation, the rise of short-term contracts and the “gig” economy. Within this context, millions of Canadians could lose their jobs to automation, or see their full-time positions replaced with short-term contracts. Unless policy makers embrace transformational changes to our social safety net, many of our social policies and programs will prove inadequate to meet these challenges, which could place an enormous strain on governments at all three levels.

The fissures in existing social programs
and policies are already evident, whether it
is unemployed workers ineligible for EI, a shortage of affordable childcare spaces or barriers to accessing mental health services
and pharmaceuticals. As more people enter
the gig economy of self-employed, independent contractors or lose out to automation, their place within Canada’s social architecture will become even more tenuous.

 

Read the full report here.

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