September 2017 meeting: Universal Basic Income

September: 7th September 2017, Universal Basic Income

We were lucky to have Save The World’s Resources give an interesting talk and debate around this important subject.

The idea of a basic income for all has been around for many years, and is gaining growing support. It has been trialled recently in Finland and trials in Scotland are planned. However, STWR believe that Universal Basic Income will not succeed unless it is implemented globally and in the context of tackling global inequalities. If it is only implemented in relatively wealthy, developed countries, it is
(A) failing to address fundamental injustices and profound human suffering and
(B) likely to be short-lived, since it would be hostage to the next wave of financial crises to hit developed nations.

STWR believe that an essential first step is to recognise Article 25 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and have it enshrined in international and national legislation. This would enable a fundamentally different and compassionate approach to social relations  – looking at humanity as one inter-related whole, rather than disparate, fragmented, competing individuals, groups and nations.

Article 25 could act as a rallying point for disparate organisations and campaigns. Enormous numbers of people are now coming together to call for profound social and economic change – witness the Occupy movement, support for more radical progressive politics (Corbyn/Labour; Bernie Sanders in the US etc. See film ‘We Are Many’).

STWR have produced a book about the proposal: ‘Heralding Article 25: A People’s Strategy for World Transformation’.  The presentation was followed by a lively discussion… One suggestion that we look at the work of the Citizens Income Trust.

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