July 14, 2017

Dr. Helena Jaczek, Minister of Community and Social Services and Chris Ballard, Minister of Housing and Minister Responsible for the Poverty Reduction Strategy, issued the following statement on the appointment of the Special Advisor for the Basic Income Pilot Research and Evaluation Advisory Committee:

“We are pleased to announce the appointment of Dr. Kwame McKenzie as Special Advisor for the Basic Income Pilot Research and Evaluation Advisory. Bringing someone of Dr. McKenzie’s stature in an advisory capacity will help ensure the quality of evaluation of the pilot and inform our analysis of the data we will collect and measure.

The Special Advisor role will provide advice to the government on how best to evaluate the outcomes of the Basic Income Pilot.

Dr. McKenzie brings a wealth of knowledge and experience to this role. He is an international expert on the social causes of illness, suicide and the development of effective, equitable health systems, with over two decades of experience. He is currently CEO of the Wellesley Institute in addition to serving as a commissioner on the Ontario Human Rights Commission and is the Director of Clinical Health Equity at the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health.

He is also a Professor and the Co-Director of the Division of Equity Gender and Population in the Department of Psychiatry, University of Toronto, in addition to being an active, funded researcher of social, community, clinical and policy issues with nearly 200 academic publications, including five books.

As a physician, psychiatrist, researcher and policy advisor, Dr. McKenzie has worked to identify the causes of mental illness, particularly in cross-cultural health.

Dr. McKenzie began his term as Special Advisor on June 28, 2017.

The Ministry of Community and Social Services is currently in the process of formally procuring a third party evaluator which is expected to be in place by the end of July.

We would like to thank Dr. McKenzie for his continued service to the province and look forward to working with him in his capacity as Special Advisor for the Basic Income Pilot Research and Evaluation Advisory Committee.”