Is it time for a Universal Basic Income in Worthing, ask campaigners
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The cost-of-living crisis has highlighted the fact that thousands of people in the UK do not have enough money to live on.
In Worthing a group of campaigners from across the community have come together to look closely at how a Universal Basic Income (UBI) could benefit local people.
What is Universal Basic Income?
It is a regular cash payment paid to individuals, as a right of legal residence, without means testing or requirements to work. The payment should be sufficient to cover basic needs.
It would be given to everyone from the age of 18 until death, with parents receiving an extra payment for each dependent child.
It is based on the principle that everyone has a fundamental right to a basic level of economic security, and seeks to provide this for individuals, regardless of their employment status.
The universal approach simplifies the welfare system, greatly reducing the administrative costs and bureaucracy currently associated with means tested benefits system. While not intended to replace the benefits system, it will lower the costs, and remove the stigma and stress of interacting with the system.
How does it work?
Everyone receives the payment and individuals are free to spend the money as they see fit. This approach respects individual autonomy, recognising that people have diverse needs and priorities.
By being unconditional, Basic Income empowers people to make choices that best suit their circumstances. It provides a sense of security and reduces the stress and anxiety associated with meeting basic needs.
It also supports individuals in pursuing entrepreneurial ventures, education, volunteering and caregiving, as they have a regular income to rely on.
Various models of UBI have been piloted across the world, all with positive results; including increases in both paid and unpaid work, better mental and physical health outcomes, higher educational attainment and attendance, less crime, and reductions in substance misuse.
What is happening locally?
With its relatively high levels of poverty, drug use, and a growing homeless population, Worthing is an ideal place for to pilot UBI.
A cross-community group of local activists has formed “Worthing Basic Income”, to explore what a pilot would look like and how it could be implemented in the town.
They would like to connect with other individuals, community groups and political parties to promote the idea to local and national government.
If you would like to hear more or get involved, Worthing Basic Income will be holding a series of public meetings.
Starting with an event at CREW Climate Resilience Centre Worthing next Thursday 30th November 7pm.
Register to attend here:
More information can be found here: