The Welsh government will test a Universal Basic Income (UBI) system that would pay adults a set amount regardless of their income.
Those leaving custody could be the first to take part in a UBI pilot program, a Welsh government spokesperson told the BBC.
Prime Minister Mark Drakeford launched the idea for UBI in Wales on Saturday. He said a pilot “should be carefully designed to ensure that it really adds revenue for the group of people we can work with.”
He added: “It’s going to have to be a pilot because we don’t have all the power in our hands to do it ourselves.
“It will have to be carefully designed to ensure that it is affordable and that it does so within the limits of the powers available to the Senedd.
“We need to start designing the pilot early to make sure that we have the best chance of operating a pilot that allows us to draw the conclusions that we would all like to see.
UBI has attracted growing interest around the world as governments seek ways to reduce poverty and reduce inequalities.
But Welsh Conservatives rejected the idea, citing research from the Jospeph Rowntree Foundation which suggested UBI could increase poverty “unless it is changed beyond recognition.”
A party spokesperson said: “The Prime Minister must continue to revive the Welsh economy, creating long-term, well-paying jobs for people rather than using Wales as a petri dish for politicians of the left who failed. “
What is universal basic income and how would it work in practice?
The idea is simple: all adults receive an unconditional sum from the state to cover the basic cost of living.
Unlike most benefits, which are means-tested, the amount is paid to everyone, regardless of their employment status, wealth, marital status or any other circumstance.
According to him, this unconditional safety net will ensure that no one lives in poverty, which in turn will unleash the creative and entrepreneurial instincts of the people.
Interest in Basic Income as a real political option has grown rapidly in recent times on both sides of the political spectrum, particularly in response to a ‘rise of robots’ which could see millions of jobs automated. in the decades to come.
UBI testing is not a new idea. Some have shown positive results on a small scale, but none have yet been demonstrated at the national level.
A successful trial that took place in Manitoba from 1974 to 1979 resulted in an 8.5% drop in hospital visits, fewer work-related incidents, and fewer emergency room visits due to, according to one study. accidents and injuries.
Fewer people were admitted to mental hospitals and doctors recorded fewer mental illness appointments.
Research found that while some groups worked less, only new mothers and teens did so to a large extent; new mothers to take care of their babies; and teens because they were under less pressure to support their families.
More recently, in Finland, 2,000 unemployed people received € 560 (£ 516) per month for two years, paid directly to their bank account. The payments didn’t stop when they got back to work.
Giving people a universal income didn’t help them find jobs, but they did feel a bit happier than those in the control group.
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This notice was published: 2021-05-18 10:19:07