Citizens’ Basic Income (CBI) – sometimes called universal basic income – is a bold and radical policy idea which has seen a rapid increase in public interest not only Scotland and the UK, but worldwide, as a potential solution to reducing poverty. Levels of poverty and inequality are stubbornly high in some of our communities and we must consider innovative solutions if we want to create a fairer society and economy centred on wellbeing.
Today is the start of #ChallengePovertyWeek which aims to draw attention to the injustice of poverty and showcase potential solutions.
It is estimated that 20% of people in Scotland are living in poverty (Scottish Government, 2019). Poverty has substantial and lasting impacts on people’s health, wellbeing, access to opportunities and ability to participate in society. Worryingly, 240,000 children in Scotland live in poverty, of which 65% are from working households (Scottish Government, 2019). We need to explore bold and innovative policies if we are to tackle poverty. Could a citizen’s basic income (CBI) be one of them?