Andrew Jackson

Andrew Jackson is the Broadbent Institute's Senior Policy Advisor.

In September, 2012 he retired from a long career as Chief Economist and Director of Social and Economic Policy with the Canadian Labour Congress.

In 2011, he was awarded the Sefton Prize by the University of Toronto for his lifetime contributions to industrial relations. Educated at the University of British Columbia and the London School of Economics and Political Science, where he earned a B. Sc. and an M.Sc. in Economics, Andrew is the author of numerous articles and five books, including Work and Labour in Canada: Critical Issues, which is now in its second edition with Canadian Scholars Press.

Posts & Activities by Andrew Jackson

  • The Conservative Platform – Tax Cuts for the Affluent, Austerity for the Many

    The Conservative platform put forward by Andrew Scheer delivers tax cuts for the relatively affluent, to be paid for by largely unspecified cuts to spending on social programs and public services. That is a poor deal for ordinary working families who get much more each year in program benefits like public health care and post-secondary education and child benefits and public pensions than they pay for in personal income taxes.

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  • When Income Tax Cuts Leave You Worse Off

    The competing personal income tax cuts proposed by the Liberal and Conservative parties in this federal election are almost identical in terms of goals and re-distributive impact, and neither advance a truly progressive agenda.

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  • A Green New Deal, Trade and Investment Deals and Canadian Jobs

    Many Canadians have, with good reason, embraced the idea of a Green New Deal. Supporters of the idea rightly say that dealing with the global climate crisis cannot be separated from the pursuit of social and economic justice. They emphasize that, with strong government leadership, a rapid transition away from the old carbon economy can generate many good new jobs in areas like renewable energy and energy conservation such that no workers need be left behind.

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  • To fight populism and racism, close tax loopholes for the rich

    It is widely argued that the rise of extreme income and wealth inequality, combined with the stagnation of wages of the middle-class and working class, have helped fuel the rise of right-wing populism and racism around the world. Many in the political centre, and not just the left, have called for robust policy measures to help create more equal societies and to counter the perception – and reality – that the economic system is rigged against ordinary working people.

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  • How to address the malaise of the middle-class

    This blogpost appeared in the Globe and Mail on February 18th. 

    By now, everybody is surely aware that the core commitments of the Liberal federal government are to “build a strong middle-class” and “help those working hard to join it.” But economic progress and social progress over the past three years seems to have been very limited, and it is far from clear that the government is pursuing the best overall strategy to promote higher living standards and greater income equality.

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  • Are Canadians overtaxed? The equation is complicated



    This blogpost originally appeared in the Globe and Mail. 

    Partly fuelled by reports from conservative think-tanks such as the Fraser Institute, many Canadians believe that they are taxed far too heavily and that the tax “burden” has been rising over time. Recently published Statistics Canada data show, in fact, that most individual Canadians pay very low effective rates of personal income tax, and that the tax “burden” has been falling.

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  • Broadbent Reads: Crashed by Adam Tooze

    Book Review

    Adam Tooze. Crashed: How a Decade of Financial Crises Changed the World. Viking. New York. 2018

    The global economic crisis is now more than a decade old, and is far from definitively behind us. Indeed, many fear, with good reason, that the recent, uneven and lethargic global recovery may soon come to an end, and that the next crisis of global capitalism could be even worse than that of 2008.

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  • National security, protectionism and the new trade deal with the United States and Mexico

    The Trudeau government has said that the new USMC agreement continues to give us an effective means of resolving bilateral disputes with the United States, allowing us to appeal to a special tribunal if  that country (or Mexico) has, in our view, violated the agreement.

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  • Federal Poverty Strategy discounts needs of seniors

    The Poverty Reduction Strategy announced by the federal government at the end of August proposes that an official Canadian poverty line be set for the first time and enshrined in legislation; and that official targets be set to reduce the poverty rate by 20% by 2020, and by 50% by 2030.

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  • Broadbent Reads: Pierre Trudeau, the Liberals and the Social Democratic Left

    What is the true nature of the Liberal Party of Canada? Is it a genuinely progressive party of the centre-left, worthy of the support of those pushing for a more equal and inclusive society? Or is it essentially a party of the status quo which campaigns from the left but generally governs from the right? These questions have a rich historical dimension which remains relevant today.

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  • Towards a new Canadian trade strategy

    Globalization in Question?

    The future of the neo liberal global economic order is seemingly in play. Brexit, President Trump's “America First” threat to both the NAFTA and the World Trade Organization (WTO) and the growing strength of the anti European Union right pose a threat to business as usual. However, there is room for doubt over the staying power of right-wing populism, which owes more to racism than to economic nationalism per se.  And corporate interests are mobilizing to preserve the very real gains they secured for themselves under the the current global trade regime, including NAFTA.

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  • The winding road to a national pharmacare program


    The Report of the House of Commons Standing Committee on Health, “Pharmacare Now, Prescription Medicine Coverage for all Canadians” released on April 18 marks a step forward towards a national program covering all Canadians, but also opens up some major political questions.

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  • How Budget 2018 can help Canada's working poor


    The Liberal government have promised to make progressive changes to the Working Income Tax Benefit (WITB) in next week's budget.

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  • Income tax system fails to correct growing inequality



    This blog post is part of a series of posts that will be focusing on the tax avoidance by Canada’s most wealthy. This series was sparked by findings in the Paradise Papers — the latest leak that revealed the offshore tax haven activities of former Canadian elected officials and political insiders. Tax avoidance is wrong. It robs the Canadian government from paying for and maintaining our health and social programs; ones that work to improve the lives of all Canadians. A government crackdown on offshore tax havens is urgent and necessary.

    Data from the 2016 Census show that income inequality grew quite significantly over the previous decade from 2005 to 2015, and that the supposedly most progressive part of our overall tax system failed to make much of a difference. This underlines the need for progressive tax reform in the next federal budget.

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  • Expand tax credits to lower the welfare wall


    In last month's Fall Economic Statement, the federal government promised to enhance the Working Income Tax Benefit (WITB) through additional annual funding of $500 Million starting in 2019. Canadians were invited to provide input on how the additional funding should be used, with the details to be announced in the 2018 federal budget.

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  • The case for progressive employment insurance reform


    Employment Insurance or EI flies beneath the political radar much of the time, but remains an important and relevant part of the Canadian social safety net. Changes are needed to respond to new labour market realities, but the program should not, as some argue, be folded into a universal basic income.

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  • Notes on the Federal Fiscal Update

    canadian money fanned out

    Social progress is made in curious ways.

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  • A progressive perspective on the 2017 German federal election


    The German election results mark a major set back for progressives in that country, with serious implications for the European Union and for global economic governance.

    Note that German voters elect a candidate in each constituency and also vote for a party. The final distribution of seats in the Parliament closely reflects the share of the national vote won by each party, with a 5% of the vote threshold to gain representation.

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  • Rising economic inequality confirmed by 2016 Census income data



    The 2016 Census income data released today shows that family and individual incomes rose significantly for most of the population in the decade from 2005 to 2015, mainly due to the resource boom that extended through most of the period. The median total income of families adjusted for inflation rose by a healthy 10.8 per cent. But the gains were unequally shared, and some families and individuals fell behind.

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  • Is Canada facing a new financial crisis?


    Leading progressive academic economist Steve Keen gained international recognition after he successfully predicted the 2007 global crisis using an alternative macro-economic model built on the pioneering work of Hyman Minsky and Wynne Godley. His new book, “Can we avoid another financial crisis?” argues that the lessons of the crash have still not been learned by the economic policy mainstream, and that a new crisis looms for some highly indebted countries, including Canada.

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