Wall Street Journal
As Democrats embrace a more activist government, some are flirting with an idea that hasn’t received serious attention since the 1970s: a minimum guaranteed income for all Americans.
Entrepreneur Andrew Yang’s presidential candidacy has gained traction with a proposal to give a $1,000 monthly “freedom dividend” to all Americans—from the poorest to the richest, employed and unemployed alike.Read more
“It’s a serious social experiment.” So says Japanese billionaire Yusaku Maezawa about his plan to give away 1 billion Japanese yen — about $9 million — to 1,000 random Twitter followers this week.
Believe it or not, this is free money, no strings attached. Well, almost no strings: Each recipient will have to fill out follow-up surveys asking what impact the cash has had on their lives. It was not clear exactly how the amount — $9,000 per person — will be disbursed.Read more
Gaston Tremblay remembers camping and fishing in Kawartha Lakes and surrounding areas with his family twice a year in the 1970s and early 1980s. It was a peaceful and tragically short time of his life.
He tried three times over the years to get back here, where he believed things might be better for him. By the time he was 14, though, his then-undiagnosed mental health issues sent him on another path — to his first stay in a psychiatric ward.
Afterwards he found himself homeless and on the streets across Canada, an anguished journey that would last more than 18 years and cost him nearly everything he held dear.Read more
Lennox Island First Nation Chief Darlene Bernard supports basic guaranteed income in P.E.I. as a strong means to help lift many – perhaps all – of her people out of poverty.
Bernard estimates 50 to 55 per cent of the approximately 1,500 Mi’kmaq people in the province live below the poverty line.
She said the process of accessing federal funding is an ongoing frustration because, she believes, Ottawa is "culturally biased'' in how it doles out money.
“If I want something from the federal government and you want something from the federal government, I jump through 100 hoops,’’ she told The Guardian. “You might jump through 10.’’Read more
Hugh Segal sees no contradiction in being a conservative who’s long advocated a way to deal with poverty that some call a radical form of wealth distribution.
And as tech disrupts and the gig economy makes jobs more precarious, his idea has been talked up by noted people of many ideological stripes. Barack Obama, Milton Friedman, Elon Musk, cabinet secretaries for Ronald Reagan or Bill Clinton, take your pick. All have endorsed, to some degree, a guaranteed basic income.Read more
Liberal leadership hopeful Michael Coteau is pledging to reinstate Ontario’s basic income pilot project, which the Ford government cancelled after promising to keep it during the 2018 election campaign.
Coteau, the MPP for Don Valley East, was involved in the pilot project as a cabinet minister in the Wynne government, and said the three-year study put Ontario “ahead of the game” on strategies to offset the effects of poverty.Read more
San Francisco Chronicle
What could you do with an extra $500 a month? Lorrine Paradela got a better night’s sleep.
The 45-year-old single mother is one of the 125 Stockton residents receiving monthly cash disbursements as part of an attention-grabbing experiment on guaranteed income.
Paradela has been able to pay for a new car after her old one was wrecked in a crash. She bought a video game console for her 16-year-old son as a thank-you gift for his help taking care of his 10-year-old sister.Read more
It sounds great on the surface. Three beautiful and important words. Universal. Basic. Income. Taken together, they sound even better. So what’s not to like about it?
In 2017, the proposed Ontario Basic Income Pilot ("OBIP") gave hope to communities that have struggled with rising unemployment rates, housing instability, and poverty.
The program provided 4,000 individuals from cities including Hamilton, Thunder Bay, and Lindsay with a minimum monthly income to pursue continued education, pay for stable housing, support their families, and improve their overall quality of life.
The goal of the pilot was to offer a sustainable solution for poverty reduction and positively contribute to the health and well-being of Ontarians.Read more
For about 15 years, Germany offered a social assistance benefit that was widely considered the opposite of basic income.
Any single, adult German resident who could not make ends meet based on their income and personal assets (or with assistance from relatives) was eligible to receive around 424 euros ($470) per month to cover food and basic necessities.Read more