This month, the Ontario government is expected to release a report by former Senator Hugh Segal mapping the way toward a basic income pilot project and setting the stage for consultations with Ontarians.

From the outset, the idea of a basic income has been mired in controversy in large part because it exposes fundamental differences in our views of justice, freedom, the balance between collective and individual rights and responsibilities, and the role of government.

The idea of an unconditional income guarantee has won renewed favour from proponents across the ideological spectrum, but that also means advocates hold very different views of what a basic income should look like, how generous it should be, whether it should be targeted or universal, and how it should be paid for.