Publications, opinions, and speeches
Published on 01/11/1997
This paper assesses the potential impact of Bill 142 which replaces existing Ontario welfare legislation with the Ontario Works Act and the Ontario Disability Support Program Act. The Ontario Works Act is clearly the more insidious piece of legislation. It forces compulsory participation in employment assistance – whose results have been found to be negligible in other jurisdictions. The program effectively turns welfare recipients into a class of indentured workers with few occupational protections. Ontario Works vests in Cabinet a wide array of powers while seriously limiting the scope for appeals. The fiscal base supporting the new legislation is uncertain, given the current disentanglement fiasco. Vitually the entire design of both new welfare programs will be set out in regulation – far from the scrutiny of the Ontario legislature and from public debate.
ISBN – 1-895796-90-3