Publications, opinions, and speeches
Maytree publishes reports, backgrounders, briefs, opinions, and speeches to help inform decision-making and to engage in public discussions on social policy issues.
Published on 11/09/2020
Statistics Canada is now using an updated version of the federally adopted poverty measure, the market basket measure (MBM). Here's what you need to know about the new 2018-base MBM.
On September 8, Statistics Canada updated the Dimensions of Poverty Hub which tracks poverty trends using the official poverty line — the market basket measure or MBM — which has been rebased to more accurately reflect the costs of living in Canada today. So how does the new 2018-base MBM help us better understand poverty in […]
Published on 26/08/2020
The recovery package announced by the federal government on August 20 should be welcome news for provincial and territorial governments. They should now reinvest the savings from the federally-funded EI changes in social assistance recipients.
On August 20, Canadians got the answer to one of the most pressing questions for millions of people across the country—what happens when the Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB) ends? The government intends to introduce legislation to strengthen and expand Employment Insurance (EI). To qualify, workers will have to have worked at least 120 hours […]
Published on 25/08/2020
There's a tension between professional expertise and everyday experience that shapes much of what we do. For solutions to work, we need to ensure that we recognize the importance of expertise that resides in our communities.
In the 1970 movie MASH, the doctors Hawkeye and Trapper storm into the operating room saying, “We’re the pros from Dover.” Impressed or intimidated, the rest of the doctors and nurses step aside to let them operate on the patient. Being a movie, it works out well. Similarly, the phrase “Don’t try this at home” […]
Published on 20/08/2020
As many of the initial emergency response programs come to an end, we should take the opportunity to reflect on the long-term effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on social assistance.
Somehow, in the roller coaster of the last five months, we have landed in the dog days of summer. As the days blended into each other – the dreary days of March somehow became the blazing hot days of August – it might seem like we have been on this ride forever. But of course, […]
Published on 29/07/2020
We need to chart out our path, and think collectively about the ideas and principles that will be our north star as we work to strengthen our social safety net.
To say that the past four months have been full of change is an understatement. But here’s one more thing we need to change. If we are going to shape a future that recognizes the inherent dignity in everyone, and reduces inequities across race, gender, and income, we need to think beyond traditional economic and […]
Published on 29/07/2020
This submission to the Toronto Office of Recovery and Rebuild Consultation is based on what we’ve heard from advocates with lived expertise to examine how the City should engage lived/living expertise in recovery and rebuild planning.
Submission to the Toronto Office of Recovery and Rebuild Consultation Download the submission At the best of times, there is not enough engagement of lived expertise in policy processes – though the City of Toronto has made significant progress in recent years. Since the beginning of the COVID-19 crisis in March 2020, there has been […]
Published on 13/07/2020
This backgrounder explores how COVID-19 emergency benefits and pre-existing changes to RGI calculations will affect RGI tenants in Ontario.
Important note: The information on this page is out of date and is only available for archival purposes. Please note that this backgrounder does not reflect the policy changes outlined in Bill 204, which was introduced in September 2020. One of the measures included in Bill 204 prevents rents from increasing for tenants in Rent-Geared-to-Income […]
Published on 29/06/2020
We can no longer pretend that we are not aware of how deeply rooted systemic racism is in Canada. For systemic change to occur, we need to determine how best to translate the strong calls for change into policy, legislative, and cultural change so that the structures that govern our society are anti-racist in themselves.
The windows of opportunity to push for enduring, systemic change are open. While the COVID-19 pandemic might seem like a force out of our control, how we respond to it isn’t. The pandemic has highlighted some deep inequalities in our society. The numbers of infections and deaths have been much higher in neighbourhoods that are […]
Published on 26/06/2020
Narrowing the definition of disability used by the Ontario Disability Support Program (ODSP) could have serious implications. Improving the program’s assessment process would yield better results for applicants, Ontario's social safety net, and the government.
Download the report (PDF) In November 2018, the Ontario government announced that it would be undertaking major reforms to Ontario’s social assistance system. As part of the reform, the government announced that it planned to align the definition of “disability” used by the Ontario Disability Support Program (ODSP) “more closely with federal government guidelines” (Government […]