The Haliburton, Kawartha, Pine Ridge Health Unit has penned a letter to the Ontario Government.

In the letter, the health unit states that it is “extremely concerning” that the Basic Income Guarantee was cancelled only months into what was scheduled to be a three-year pilot project. In 2016 HKPR’s Board of Health endorsed the pilot project.

“The Basic Income Guarantee was an innovative program that had the potential to pay dividends in the fight against poverty,” says Kristina Nairn a social determinants nurse with the HKPR. Nairn says that 4,000 people already enrolled in the project will be negatively affected by the cancellation as well as nearly 1.7 million Ontarians living in poverty.

B.I.G. could help reduce the economic barriers to good health and ensure that families and low-income individuals have enough income to meet basic needs and live with dignity says Mary-Lou Mills, another social determinants nurse with the HKPR.

Mills added that seeing the project through to the end would have provided a clearer picture of its benefits.