Dan Hurt Explains COVID-19’s Impact on the Universal Basic Income Movement
The global COVID-19 Pandemic has sparked additional interest and discussion in the Universal Basic Income (UBI) movement as a major basis for public policy. While the exact definitions vary, Dan Hurt describes the features of UBI as a broad coverage to citizens by providing a guaranteed minimum income regardless of events and if recipients receive payments from other sources. Florida-based information technology guru with a passion for the movement, Dan Hurt, further explains what UBI is and how its popularity has grown because of COVID-19 below.
What is the UBI Movement?
UBI programs provide an opportunity by which citizens cannot fall by offering unconditional payments to the population. UBI is not a new societal invention since it has considerably been discussed in economic literature and related to health inequality. In practice, multiple existing plans have provided guaranteed income as governments have tested the waters of this idea.
What are the Benefits?
The first national trial started in 2017 in Finland whereby 2000 unemployed citizens were paid 560 Euros per month over two years. The most relevant evidence is derived from less developed countries in sub-Saharan Africa where the same idea was implemented and resulted in a reduction in short-term poverty. Latin American trials found a significant reduction in short-term poverty with the poverty level in Brazil falling to its lowest level in 40-years with a quarter of the population receiving monthly payments since March 2020. All these studies in less developed countries also showed improved overall health since poverty and income are intertwined with poorer health results.
Also, studies show that childhood poverty is inversely related to the working memory of young adults. That means impoverished children are 4.5 times more likely to develop some form of severe mental health issues than those in the highest income bracket. Dan Hurt further cites that UBI recipients in Finland reported lower depression, sadness, and loneliness rates with a decrease in overall mental strain. In summary 27 studies published in 2020 reported improved health benefits from UBI including an increase in nutrient consumption for those with low birth weight infants, improved adult health, and a reduction in mortality.
How Has COVID-19 Impacted UBI?
Given the relationship between money and health, especially in developing nations, those in poorer neighborhoods have not been able to get the required treatment to help during the pandemic. This has led to many countries considering UBI to raise the general health and welfare of the population.
Dan Hurt has studied the many benefits of UBI and with the COVID-19 pandemic impact on the entire global population, many governments are not considering this approach to prevent future issues. Many studies have been performed to showcase the success stories of this concept.