Provincial budget & finance

Massive public investment, not austerity, is the answer

Aug 18, 2020
A depression is still around the corner if the Canadian government does not continue to radically intervene in the economy. We have all encountered the dark outlines of the crisis facing us by now. Everywhere there are warnings of mass unemployment unseen in decades, already vulnerable workers—young, racialized, women—hit hardest, entire industries at risk, a… View Article

BC Budget Consultation Presentation June 2020

Jun 8, 2020
The BC government is holding its annual public consultation on Budget 2021 this June, inviting British Columbians to share their priorities for government investment next year. BC Budget 2021 will have to tackle the impacts of the COVID-19 crisis—the full extent of which are still largely unknown. It is hard to predict where we as… View Article

Flatten the myth: Don’t fear government debt after COVID-19

May 11, 2020
Myth: Government debt rising from the COVID-19 crisis is a big problem. Reality check: Large-scale public spending to support people and invest in long-term public goods is prudent not only on a human level, but also in economic terms. The size of government debt compared to our economy (our debt-to-GDP ratio) will rise substantially through… View Article

CCPA-BC signs Joint Statement for a Just Recovery

May 7, 2020
Today the CCPA-BC added its support to a joint statement led by the Vancouver Just Recovery Coalition calling on the City of Vancouver to prioritize lessening existing inequalities, respecting Indigenous rights, and tackling the climate emergency in their COVID-19 recovery plans. Read the full statement below. You can endorse this statement here. Joint Statement for… View Article

Comparing provincial economic responses to COVID-19

Apr 23, 2020
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 federal government addressing national issues,… View Article

Time to end profit-making in seniors’ care

Apr 22, 2020
The coronavirus pandemic has shone a light on serious problems in Canada’s seniors’ care system, as nursing homes quickly became the epicenters of the outbreak. These problems are not only due to the greater vulnerability of seniors to the disease, but also to how care is organized and staffed.  In recent weeks, BC’s provincial government… View Article

Time to extend financial supports to local governments

Apr 15, 2020
Local governments and regional authorities like TransLink have been missing from federal and provincial economic responses to COVID-19. Local governments are facing collapsing revenues, and unlike federal and provincial governments, they are not allowed to run deficits to cover their operating costs. As a result they are already staring into the abyss of painful austerity… View Article

Food insecurity and hunger during COVID-19

Apr 7, 2020
The COVID-19 pandemic has exposed holes in our social safety net and significant inequality across BC households. Much of the recent focus has been on workers facing unemployment and renters unable to pay for their housing, with new federal and provincial supports enacted to try to address these needs. In this post I want to… View Article

Taking stock of COVID-19 economic policy measures in BC

A multitude of measures have been tabled by the provincial and federal governments to prop up workers and an economy reeling from mandated closures of businesses brought about by physical distancing measures. Spring 2020 will be a period economic historians will be writing about for decades to come. Most economists were encouraging significant fiscal and… View Article