Upcoming Events

Amy Castro flyer

Towards a Just Economy: Guaranteed Income & Human Potential 

February 23, 2023
5:30 pm to 7 pm
Loyola Science Center, 133

Amy Castro, Ph.D., MSW
Associate Professor, University of Pennsylvania

In 2019 the city of Stockton, CA piloted the concept of unconditional cash--- no strings attached—as a tool to alleviate poverty and income volatility. Rather than tying income support to work performance, 125 randomly selected individuals received $500 per month for two years on a pre-paid debit card.  Dr. Amy Castro co-led this experiment alongside Dr. Stacia West and former Mayor Michael Tubbs to address poverty at its roots while interrogating assumptions about deservedness and re-imagining the social contract. Individuals who received the cash experienced stability in household finances, saw measurable improvements in mental health and well-being, freedom from forced vulnerability, alleviation of physical pain, and an increase in full-time employment that was not seen in the comparison group. These findings point towards new pathways of re-imagining our approach to a just economy that unlocks human potential.  The success of the program sparked renewed interest in the concept of basic income, or guaranteed income, with over 100 new experiments being launched by other Mayors, counties, and non-profits around the United States. Dr. Castro and her team are now leading 30 additional experiments across the United States based on the Stockton model.  


 

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