Last month Laura Bannister, campaign director of World Basic Income, and a former GPEW candidate in Manchester, gave a fascinating talk to OGP on the longstanding Green Party policy of Universal Basic Income, which you can listen to below.
The idea is to pay everyone a fixed sum of money to meet basic needs, to which people can then add other earnings or payments. The 2019 Green Party manifesto, fully costed, envisaged a weekly rate of £89 per week per working-age adult (more for pensioners). Having been dismissed as unrealistic for years, it is now being taken seriously by economists and trialled in pilot projects - so far all abroad, although Sheffield Council has voted to trial it under a sympathetic government (see UBI Lab Sheffield).
As well as local/national trials, Laura’s organisation advocates a global rate; 30 dollars a month per person, which she maintains is feasible, would make a big difference to the poorest people in the world, and this amount would rise as the scheme developed.
WBI is crowdfunding to produce a book on its bold vision, and Laura has asked us to tell our members in Oxfordshire about it. Hopefully quite a few of us will contribute to her appeal.
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