“Before SEED came along, I was paying a lot of bills and didn’t know how I was gonna eat…it’s like being able to breathe.” – Laura, participant
The Stockton Economic Empowerment Demonstration (SEED) recently concluded a two year guaranteed income demonstration in Stockton, California. SEED randomly selected 125 residents in neighbourhoods with a median income at or below $46,033 – the city’s median household income – and gave them each $500/month for 24 months. This was provided, as far as possible, on top of existing social security benefits.
The cash was unconditional – no strings attached. It did not require people to work. The project found that it yielded multiple benefits including:
One participant, Mekie, said: “Things got a little easier. So my car payments are on time now. So it’s better. Rent’s been getting better.”
The success of SEED led to the establishment of Mayors for a Guaranteed Income, a coalition of 40 mayors calling for a guaranteed income as a way of tackling poverty across the country.
Together we can ensure everyone has enough to afford life's essentials.