The (Hazy) Way Forward for Social Assistance Reform

James Elson On February 19, 2013 the Honourable David C. Onley, Ontario’s Lieutenant Governor, delivered the “The Way Forward”, the government’s Speech from the Throne.  Following her win in the recent Ontario Liberal leadership convention (covered by a PPGR blogger here) Ontario’s premier, Kathleen Wynne, announced her government’s priorities, including the following: Eliminating the deficit…

ODSP Reform: Why Mandatory Employment Won’t Work

Ahila Poologaindran  Since its inception in 1998, the Ontario Disability Support Program (ODSP) has been a parcel of Ontario’s social assistance program, providing income support benefits and employment support services to people with disabilities. Due to a recommendation in the 2008 Poverty Reduction Strategy that identified removal of barriers and importance of employment support as…

Social Assistance Reform: Another Casualty of Prorogation

James Elson On October 24, 2012 the Commission for the Review of Social Assistance in Ontario released its final report, entitled “Brighter Prospects:  Transforming Social Assistance in Ontario”.  Chaired by Frances Lankin—the former president and CEO of United Way Toronto—and Munir Sheikh—the former head of Statistics Canada (who publicly resigned after the mandatory census was…