Locked down, not locked out: An eviction prevention plan for Ontario

Amid the COVID-19 pandemic, provinces and territories have implemented eviction bans that protect tenants from the imminent threat of homelessness but do not prevent them from falling in arrears and being evicted once bans are lifted. Eviction bans contributed to the effectiveness of shelter-in-place emergency orders put in place to…
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Post-pandemic: Towards a more equitable, inclusive, sustainable society

We live in unprecedented times. The global community has been broadsided by a pandemic that has upended our lives socially, physically, psychologically, and financially. As Canadian provinces begin re-emerging from the shutdown, it’s important to appreciate that the world as we know it will never be the same. We can’t…
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Between a rock and a hard place: Which workers are most vulnerable when their workplaces re-open amid COVID-19?

Key facts: Oil sands and meat packing workers have seen terrifying COVID-19 outbreaks as they’ve stayed open in the first phase of the pandemic.  Child care workers, construction labourers, servers, cashiers, and bus drivers have almost identical high risk scores as industrial butchers but, so far, they have been protected…
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PSE student support program: Does it pass the test? 

Key points: At least 1.17 million post secondary education (PSE) students or recent grads will use the Canada Emergency Student Benefit (CESB). They wouldn’t have been able to access the CERB. 620,000 PSE students will receive the more generous Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB) instead. As the winter term winds…
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Show, don’t tell: Canada’s COVID-19 response doesn’t meet students’ needs or reflect their realities

If you’re a young person in Canada right now, chances are you’re used to the government letting you down. Whether you’re a teenager in Ontario affected by education cuts, a university student looking at climbing tuition and housing costs, or happen to live on the planet that’s being gutted for…
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Gender impact of Canada’s income supports

Key Findings 5.3 million women and 3.4 million men were jobless in April. This is up from 1.7 million women and 1.3 million men in March.  In April, 14% of jobless women and 20% of jobless men had no income supports. As a result, 731,000 jobless women and 681,000 jobless…
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Comparing provincial economic responses to COVID-19

The COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted the vital importance of collective responses via governments at all levels. The Canadian context of federalism, with a division of powers between federal and provincial/territorial governments, also highlights key differences in approaches to the pandemic. At its best, federalism is an advantageous arrangement, with the…
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1.4 million jobless Canadians getting no income support in April

Key Findings Who’s in, who’s out: In April there were 1.4 million jobless Canadians without any income support from EI or CERB, up from 895,000 in March. 16% of all jobless Canadians had no support in April, down from 30% in March. The largest group of excluded workers (549,000) lost…
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Extend tax filing deadline to ensure low incomes receive benefits

With the ongoing COVID-19 state of emergency, the federal government should waive the requirement that low-income individuals complete their 2019 tax forms by June 1st to continue to receive benefits—or extend the tax filing deadline for low incomes until much later. Millions of low-income families, seniors, and people with disabilities…
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The hidden and not-so-hidden casualty of COVID-19

Since the province has sensibly decided that “professional and social services that support the legal and justice system” are part of the essential services during the COVID-19 pandemic, I have continued to go to my workplace everyday at the Chinese & Southeast Asian Legal Clinic (CSALC), which remains open to…
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