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Economy

Couillard’s Liberals promise guaranteed minimum income for some Quebecers

Quebec Premier Philippe Couillard speaks at a news conference, Sunday, December 10, 2017 at a physical rehab centre in Quebec City. Couillard announced a government plan to fight on poverty. .
Quebec Premier Philippe Couillard speaks at a news conference, Sunday, December 10, 2017 at a physical rehab centre in Quebec City. Couillard announced a government plan to fight on poverty. . Jacques Boissinot/The Canadian Press

Premier Philippe Couillard is promising to create a guaranteed minimum income for certain Quebecers as part of a $3 billion anti-poverty plan.

Couillard and Employment Minister François Blais presented the government’s five-year anti-poverty strategy in Quebec City on Sunday.

READ MORE: Quebec promises to create more jobs

The plan would boost the annual income of those who are unable to work by more than $5,000 to about $18,029 a year and establish a guaranteed minimum income for them.

Those deemed able to work would not receive increased benefits under the plan but could be eligible for subsidized training or job search bonuses.

READ MORE: Montrealers march 15 kilometres for $15 minimum wage

The Quebec government says the plan would help lift about 100,000 people out of poverty by 2023 but anti-poverty groups are already denouncing it, saying it creates two classes of poor by punishing those who are deemed able to work.

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The next provincial election is set for October 2018.

WATCH: Fighting poverty in Canada

Focus Montreal: Fighting poverty in Canada
Focus Montreal: Fighting poverty in Canada