Supporting an Emergency Universal Basic Income during the Coronavirus Crisis

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Boris Johnson has just agreed to hold talks about the possible introduction of a universal basic income in the UK as an emergency measure to secure and support household and individual income during the corona crisis. This virus is likely to affect us all and therefore the support package needs to reflect that. 

Like me, lots of people across Britain are worried not only about their health but also their ability to live without work and sufficient income. Self-employed people, people on precarious zero hour contracts, bar and restaurant staff, artists, students, rent payers, mortgage payers, health care professionals, teachers and supermarket staff, single people, older people, sick people, healthy people, not forgetting all those whose workload has now doubled and remains unrecognised, as schools are forced to close and parents balance childcare and employment or find themselves unemployed. We are all going to be economically affected and we all need support at this critical time. This should be a bail-out in the form of a grant NOT a loan!

An emergency unconditional basic income of £800-1,000 per person per month for the next 6 months would do just that.

During the last financial recession in 2008, the government bailed the banks out with an estimated £850bn. This time the money needs to go directly to the people. Only last week the Chancellor of the Exchequer, Rishi Sunak, announced that £12 billion will be allocated to mitigating the economic impact of the corona virus pandemic. A universal basic income would be immediate, non-bureaucratic and radical.

This is not an unreasonable or idealistic goal. Such an urgent basic income is being implemented in Denmark as we speak, and petitions similar to this are underway in countries across Europe

If enough people sign it, this petition will show Boris Johnson and the UK government how much support there is for the idea, from the people of Great Britain and Northern Ireland.