Citizen’s Basic Income Trust November 2020 Newsletter
The spooky news on Halloween was that England is going into another lockdown for at least a month. October also saw the introduction of a “firebreak” lockdown in Wales and stricter rules in Scotland. All of this will no doubt heap misery, both economic and mental, on millions around the country.
Basic Income can help. It can give everyone a floor of economic security, so that no one is forced to choose between their lives and their livelihoods. And with economic security comes less stress and the opportunity for everyone to do what is right for them and their communities.
The Basic Income movement is trying to keep the pressure on. On the same day that Boris Johnson announced the new lockdown, a letter was published calling on Rishi Sunak to back the introduction of Basic Income trials around the country. It was signed by 520 politicians at all levels of Government (from MPs to Assembly members to local councillors) and from (almost) every party. Only the Conservatives were absent from the list.
The letter is now in the public domain and you can add your name to it.
Trials are a reasonable first step to the introduction of UBI but local authorities in the UK do not have the power on their own to run them. Central government needs to take steps to allow them to happen.
And speaking of central government, October also saw a debate on Basic Income in the Houses of Parliament, via a Westminster Hall debate. You can watch the debate here and read a very thorough and non-partisan briefing paper prepared by the House of Commons Library here.
In Europe, the starting gun has been fired to collect one million signatures for a so-called Citizens Initiative calling on the EU Commission (the EU’s executive) to to explore proposals for a UBI in all 27 member states.