Mayor Tishaura Jones at Protest for Transgender Rights at The Grove St. Louis March 25, 2023.

Mayor Tishaura Jones’ Guaranteed Basic Income Program Proven Successful and Necessary in St. Louis

Mayor Tishaura Jones at Protest for Transgender Rights at The Grove St. Louis March 25, 2023.
Mayor Tishaura Jones at Protest for Transgender Rights at The Grove St. Louis March 25, 2023.

Guaranteed Basic Income Pilot Program St. Louis

Mayor Tishaura Jones of St. Louis started the Guaranteed Basic Income Pilot Program, with funds from the American Rescue Plan (ARPA) to help families whose children attend city public schools. GBI helps to reduce poverty, inequality, and social exclusion, and provide individuals with greater economic security and autonomy.

Analysis of 20 pilot programs across the country has shown how payments empower families to spend on the essentials – groceries, bills and utilities, transportation, daily household needs, and the like. St. Louis is joining a national movement to support working families to deliver the stability they need to get back on their feet and into the workforce. 

GBI is needed more than ever in 2023 as job losses continue as automation and AI are becoming common place, causing even more economic insecurities with poor families who are struggling to make ends meet. Additionally, rising income inequality and the increasing precarity of work may make it more difficult for some individuals to achieve economic stability.

Jobs at risk due to advances in robotics, artificial intelligence, and other technologies are manufacturing, transportation, and retail which are already experiencing significant changes. GPT 4, another AI technology, apparently passed the Bar Exam so job losses could include many other sectors in the future as well.

If you are in need of cash assistance in St. Louis, you can contact the Missouri Department of Social Services to learn more about available programs and eligibility requirements.

Cash Assistance in U.S. and Around the World

Cash assistance programs have been successful in reducing poverty and improving the well-being of individuals and families in many countries around the world. There is a large body of research that shows that cash transfers can have positive impacts on a range of outcomes, including health, education, and economic empowerment.

For example, a study in Mexico found that a conditional cash transfer program improved school attendance and reduced poverty in participating households. Similarly, a study in Uganda found that a cash transfer program improved nutrition outcomes for children and reduced poverty among participating households.

Cash transfers have also been used effectively in humanitarian contexts, such as in response to natural disasters or conflicts. In these contexts, cash transfers can help to provide immediate relief and support the recovery of affected communities.

Overall, while cash assistance programs have shown promise in reducing poverty and improving well-being, they need to be part of a broader set of policies and interventions aimed at addressing the root causes of poverty and inequality.