The Ministry of Community and Social Services says it will announce details “soon” about which communities will be selected for participation, and how the pilots will be structured. It is taking into account public feedback based on a detailed discussion paper prepared by political strategist and former senator Hugh Segal.

During his nine years as a Conservative senator, Segal was a passionate advocate for a basic income. He found little political will to do more than tinker with existing benefits.

“Over the last quarter century,” he says, “there is probably no area of public policy, in either urban or rural Canada, where creativity and courage from governments have been less evident than on the issue of poverty faced by working age adults.”