UNIVERSAL-BASED INCOME—ARE WE ONE STEP CLOSER? AUSTIN, TEXAS BEGINS GUARANTEED INCOME PROGRAM


Over the coming year, Austin, Texas will commence the first ever in the Lone Star State, a guaranteed income pilot program.


In a meeting on Thursday, the Austin City Council, voted to approve a contract between Austin and anti-poverty innovation company UpTogether. UpTogether will administer a guaranteed income pilot program.

UpTogether used to be called Family Independent Initiative. UpTogether invests money that aids disadvantaged communities. There are other initiatives out there who are determined to make some type of universal based income commonplace for all people.


The Austin City Council authorized the contract with UpTogether for one year, not to exceed $1,180,000.00.

Prior to the vote, Austin’s Mayor Steve Adler tweeted “I am supporting a guaranteed basic income pilot program in Austin to help working people and families become more resilient to financial emergencies, make rent, cover childcare, and put food on the table.”

Under the pilot program, 85 households will be provided $1000 per month for one year. In addition to hard core cash being contributed to these households, the participants will meet virtually in small groups to learn skills, exchange sources and be connected to additional services the City of Austin has in connection with its partnership with Austin Public Heath. This program is to help support these families and to help them create self-determined paths. Prior to being in this program, I am sure many of these families probably didn’t believe they had a right to self-determined paths. They were poor and poverty breeds necessity and a spirit of survival, not thriving, not creativity and not the risk-taking mental appetite needed to cultivate the self-disruption necessary to take self-determined paths.


I recently wrote a blog entitled “A Journey to 40 Years From Now — An Offering of Possibilities.” In that article, I mentioned that universal-based income was becoming an income source option for people 40 years from now and people were accepting the income in my future scenario.

If these 85 Austin households show any improvement in their financial, mental and life condition with this guaranteed based income, I forecast that more cities and even states, eventually will follow.

Is this a good thing or bad thing? Well if you know me, I don’t categorize life in good or bad terms for the most part. I category life in what happens. And universal-based income or guaranteed-based income as Austin is calling it, is here. It’s not commonplace yet, but a seed that is beginning to puncture through the soil of our current life possibility.

I know some of you are going to be pissed that people are being offered “free money.” But have you ever asked yourself why money wasn’t free in the first place.


I don’t tend to think America needs a universal based income or guaranteed based income, but I do think universal based resources is something we should all have and the “money” in your bank account or wallet should not dictate whether these resources are available to you. Universal based resources include basic food, basic shelter, and basic utilities including the internet. Even some homeless encampments in various major cities are having access to free solar power to have phone and internet access. Maybe this Austin City Council pilot program is another signal of change coming to America driven by a new policy that all Americans, rich or poor, should have basic resources of survival at no cost.


Maybe America—maybe even the world—is one step closer to reducing the capitalistic monopoly of basic resources that the Earth offers for free to all humans and all humans should have a right to enjoy without others believing its welfare or laziness or charging ridiculous prices for usage.


ABOUT THE BLOGGER

La Shon Y. Fleming Bruce a/k/a SHONSPEAKS is a blogger, futurist certified brain health specialist, speaker, and lead creator of freeyourthinkingmind.com. I am also a lawyer and managing member of The Fleming-Bruce Law Firm, P.L.L.C. If you want to check out more of my writings that may not be released on this site, go over to my website at freeyourthinkingmind.com

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