Jack Dorsey, the Chief Executive Officer of the microblogging site Twitter and financial services company Square, is donating a sum of $3 million to explore the idea of universal basic income (UBI), a guaranteed minimum income provided to all citizens without any prerequisites or conditions.
The amount will be donated to Mayors for a Guaranteed Income (MGI), a new coalition of 16 mayors across the United States that are looking to run pilot UBI programs in their cities. This group was created by Micheal Tubbs, the 29 year-old mayor of Stockton, California, who has been running a guaranteed income pilot program in his city since the winter of 2018.
Mayors for a Guaranteed Income include the following mayors and their cities:
Micheal Tubbs; Stockton, California
Ras Baraka; Newark, New Jersey
Steve Benjamin; Columbia, South Carolina
Keisha Lance Bottoms; Atlanta, Georgia
Aja Brown; Compton, California
Melvin Carter; St. Paul, Minnesota
Jenny Durkan; Seattle, Washington
Eric Garcetti; Los Angeles, California
Robert Garcia; Long Beach, California
Alex Morse; Holyoke, Massachusetts
Chokwe Antar Lumumba; Jackson, Mississippi
William Peduto; Pittsburgh
Adrian Perkins; Shreveport, Lousiana
Satya Rhodes-Conway; Madison, Wisconsin
Libby Schaaf; Oakland, California
Victoria R. Woodards; Tacoma, Washington
This group could affect about 7 million Americans across 16 different cities, which include Los Angeles; Atlanta; Newark, New Jersey; and Jackson, Mississippi, among many others.
However, who would be eligible for the payments and what amount they would receive has not been divulged yet.
Dorsey put up a post on Twitter confirming the news with a message that said, “This is one tool to close the wealth and income gap, level systemic race and gender inequalities, and create economic security for families.”
$3M to @MichaelDTubbs and @mayorsforagi for #guaranteedincome programs in cities across the country. This is one tool to close the wealth and income gap, level systemic race and gender inequalities, and create economic security for families. #UBIhttps://t.co/1APG505xZH
— jack (@jack) July 9, 2020
The donation is being made by Dorsey from his philanthropic organization #startsmall, which he created by transferring $1 billion worth of shares from Square.
The Universal Basic Income is a controversial topic in the world. While proponents of the plan propose that this initiative will help offset long-term job losses, more so in today’s time of the coronavirus pandemic, opponents believe that it would incentivize people to not be productive.
What do you think about the idea of UBI? Do share your views with us in the comments section below.