The Ottawa Food Bank says it’s disappointed in the decision by Ontario’s PC government to cancel a basic income pilot project, and to pull back on planned increases to social assistance rates.

The provincial government will reduce the previous government’s planned three per cent increase to social assistance rates to just 1.5 per cent. The Ottawa Food Bank points out, social assistance rates have not kept pace with inflation and argues that the reduced increase will continue to cause reliance on emergency food banks.

The food bank also criticizes the Ford government’s decision to cancel Ontario’s basic income pilot project. The food bank says the pilot was already making positive changes, and would have provided evidence-based research as to whether a basic income approach could be a tool to reduce poverty in Ontario.