THUNDER BAY – Anti-poverty advocates will set up a tent city in front of Thunder Bay City Hall on Tuesday, November 27 at noon to draw attention to the Ford Government’s cancellation of the basic-income pilot program as well as the cuts to ODSP and Ontario Works, which was announced this past Thursday, November 22. The protesters say that these cuts and reforms to social assistance represent a war on the poor. The protest is organized by Disrupt, an organization formed in part by basic income recipients who are now dealing with fear and uncertainty for their futures.
Organizers say that the objective of the protest is to draw attention to the costs of poverty not only for individuals whom it affects directly but for all of society. The tents symbolize the precariousness, homelessness and exposure to the elements that many people living in poverty face every day. By making this reality visible, organizers hope to disrupt the status quo and humanize the problem.
Protesters are demanding that the basic income pilot program be reinstated and that the government commit to collecting data on the process to determine if the initiative should be broadened and extended.
The City of Thunder Bay has written to the federal government asking that the Basic Income Pilot Project be continued and that the federal government provide the funding.
The protest will take place between 12 noon and 1 pm in front of the Thunder Bay City Hall.