Los Angeles has just launched a guaranteed income program that will select 1,000 residents to earn $1,000 over three years.
On Thursday dozens of residents lined up in South Los Angeles to apply for the ‘Breathe: LA County’s Guaranteed Income Program’- California’s latest Universal Basic Income program.
The no strings-attached program will provide $1,000 to 1,000 Los Angeles residents every month for three calendar years through a debit card provided by the County.
In order to qualify for the program L.A residents must be at least 18-years-old, have a household income below $56,000 for a single person or $96,000 for a family of four, and have been financially affected by the pandemic.
Applicants must also live in a neighborhood where the median household income is not higher than the county’s.
Dozens of residents lined up in South L.A to apply for the ‘Breathe: LA County’s Guaranteed Income Program’- the state’s latest Universal Basic Income program
The program will provide $1,000 to 1,000 Los Angeles residents every month for three calendar years through a debit card provided by the County
To qualify for the program applicants must live in a neighborhood where the median household income is not higher than the county’s
Application for the program, which launched on Thursday, will be open until April 13.
This is the latest such program in California, last year LA county launched BIG:LEAP, will provided $1,000 in cash to 3,200 households and Compton and Long Beach also launched similar programs over the last year.
At the time, Mayor Eric Garcetti called it ‘the largest guaranteed basic income program anywhere in the United States of America.’
A version of the UBI program, which was popularized by former Democratic presidential candidate Andrew Yang, has gained more attention after the pandemic idled millions of workers.
Cities across the country are trying out pilot guaranteed income programs as researchers hope the results give them a fuller picture of what happens when a range of people are sent payments that guarantee a basic living.
Last October Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot has announced the launch of a $31 million universal basic income pilot that would give $500 a month to low income families.
Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors Chair Holly Mitchell (pictured) said the program is an attempt to figure out how to reduce systemic poverty by providing people with a minimal income
To qualify residents must be at least 18, have a household income below $56,000 for a single person or $96,000 for a family of four
In New York City, a pilot program giving payments of $1,250 to as many as 40 homeless people between 18 and 24 for two years – with no strings attached, was announced during the summer.
Recipients can request how they want their money, such as in incremental payments or upfront as cash, and have no limits as to how they could spend it.
Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors Chair Holly Mitchell, who formally opened the application period at Thursday’s launch event told CBS Los Angeles the program is an attempt to figure out how to reduce systemic poverty by providing people with a minimal income to take care of their families.
‘We all know what we have experienced these last two years, a dual pandemic, both public health and economic, and quite frankly, it has hit communities the hardest who were already suffering and having challenges making ends meet month to month,’ Mitchell said.
Mitchell said funding for the program comes from the government and a number of foundations and it will be overseen by the L.A. County Poverty Alleviation Initiative and a research team from the University of Pennsylvania’s Center for Guaranteed Income Research who will study what long-term impacts the additional income has on residents’ economic wellbeing.
Since 2019, around 40 mayors have either started to consider or successfully launched guaranteed income programs.
But critics warn of a possible downside, people relying on fixed income can become discouraged of joining the workforce.
In October, the National Federation of Independent Business reported more than half of small businesses are having trouble filling up jobs.
More than 40 cities across the US launch guaranteed income schemes for their poorest residents
Tacoma, Washington – Growing Resilience in Tacoma (GRIT), will provide 100 families with a guaranteed income of $500 for one year. Families must live within Tacoma and earn less than $52,000 per year.
Saint Paul, Minnesota – People’s Prosperity Guaranteed Income Pilot will provide at least 150 Saint Paul families with $500 per month as a guaranteed income for up to 18 months.
Columbia, South Carolina – The Columbia Life Improvement Monetary Boost (CLIMB) will proivide 100 participants with a guaranteed income of $500 for 12 months. Participants will be selected among a pool of Black fathers in partnership with the Midlands Fatherhood Coalition.
Compton, California – The Compton Pledge will provide 800 city residents with a guaranteed income in amounts ranging from $300 to $600, for 24 months.
Newark, New Jersey – Mayor Ras J. Baraka announced the Newark Movement for Economic Equity, which will provide a group of 200 paricipants with $250 bi-weekly for two years and another group of 200 participants with $3000 four times over two years.
LA, California – The Basic Income Guaranteed: L.A. Economic Assistance Pilot (BIG:LEAP) will provide 2,000 city residents with a guaranteed income of $1,000 for a year
Oakland, California – Oakland Resilient Families will provide 600 selected Oakland families with a guaranteed income of $500 per month for at least 18 months. Families will be randomly selected after completing an online application.
Long Beach, California – Mayor Robert Garcia has proposed a guaranteed income program that will support artists who were financially affected by the COVID-19 pandemic and reside in Long Beach.
Madison, Wisconsin – Mayor Satya Rhodes-Conway is working with local philanthropy donors to raise money toward a soon-to-be announced guaranteed income pilot that will serve families in
Sacramento, California – The Direct Investment Program in Sacramento (DIPS) is providing 100 families in Sacramento County with $300 every month for 24 months.
San Diego, California – The Resilient Communities for Every Child initiative will provide a guaranteed income of $500 to 150 randomly selected participants for at least 24 months. Participants will be selected from zip codes in San Diego, CA & National City, CA who were disproportionately affected from COVID-19 and poverty.
Denver, Colorado – The Denver Basic Income Project will provide groups of homeless individuals a guaranteed income ranging from $50 to $6,500.
Baltimore, Maryland – Mayor Brandon Scott has named a steering committee to begin the process of designing a guaranteed income pilot in Baltimore.
Chelsea, Massachusetts – As a way to support low-income families in Chelsea, MA, 2,040 families in the city will receive a guaranteed income of up to $400 for several months.
Source: Mayors for a Guaranteed Income