An Ontario minister admits the new government has backtracked on a campaign promise to keep the province’s basic income pilot project in place.

Social Services Minister Lisa MacLeod blamed the “realities” the Progressive Conservatives faced, upon coming into power last month, for the decision she announced on Tuesday.

“[There’s] the decision in the campaign and then you find the realities of when you’re in government,” MacLeod told reporters on Wednesday, restating her intent to “come up with a better plan in 100 days.”

It marks the first broken promise of Premier Doug Ford’s government.

During the campaign, a spokeswoman for PC Leader Doug Ford said “nope” when asked if the basic income pilot would be scrapped, and added “we look forward to seeing the results.”

“This minister is callously dashing their hopes for the future,” said NDP Leader Andrea Horwath. “This minister is out of touch. She has no idea what people living in poverty are facing.”

Green Leader Mike Schreiner said the decision on the pilot program — leaving participants with an uncertain future — appears to be based on ideology given the lack of a detailed explanation from MacLeod.

The minister’s words about improving incentives to get people off welfare ring hollow because the Conservatives are suspending rules allowing social assistance recipients to keep $400 monthly, up from $200, earned through part-time jobs, said interim Liberal Leader John Fraser.

The Ontario government is defending its decision to cancel the province’s basic income pilot project, suggesting the program discouraged participants from finding work.

Social Services Minister Lisa MacLeod says that giving people money “with no strings attached” goes against the government’s goal of getting people back on track and making them productive members of society.

The minister announced Tuesday that the province would be “winding down” the program, which gave payments to low-income people in certain communities, but did not give a timeline for that to happen.