Province encouraging welfare recipients to work under the table

Editor:

If Premier John Horgan and the B.C. NDP cannot afford to increase the welfare rates then they should at least increase the earnings exemption “big time” so the poor will have an incentive to take a job with enough hours and pay to pull them out of poverty. 

The piecemeal earnings exemptions effectively keep the poor in a perpetual cycle of poverty.

If the earnings exemption were to rise more people, in theory, would be eligible for welfare. I do not see anything wrong with this. The provincial government would essentially be ensuring the poor and working poor have an opportunity to earn a sustainable level of income. 

The government in turn would provide a small financial top-up with extended health benefits and prescription and perhaps a bus pass.

This would basically be a type of “guaranteed annual income” for the poor and working poor.

The good thing about targeting social benefits for people who really need them is they are likely to spend almost all of their money in the local economy. This creates jobs and supports businesses.

The current shelter and support allowance of $760 per month for a single employable person is shamefully inadequate. How is a poor person supposed to find housing on that amount of money in Metro Vancouver, never mind buying enough food to prevent starvation?

The provincial government is essentially encouraging welfare recipients to work under the table or illegally to cover their basic necessities or die. 

Alex Sangha MSM

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