Data shows benefits of city’s universal basic income program

Scripps News

A “no strings attached” cash program for people experiencing homelessness in Denver shows early promise, according to a report by the nonprofit Denver Basic Income Project

In a six-month follow-up of participants, those receiving the most assistance tended to be more likely to have permanent housing and a full-time job. 

Almost 850 participants who are experiencing homelessness either with or without shelter have received monthly cash deposits of varying amounts since November 2022. The project split up recipients into three groups: the first gets $1,000 per month for the year; the second gets $6,500 upfront and $500 per month for the rest of the year; and the third gets $50 per month.

According to new findings, the groups who received $6,500 upfront and $500 per month were more likely to have permanent housing six months into the program. Those who received $50 a month were the least likely. 

At the start of the program, about 21% of those in the group getting $6,500 upfront had full-time work. Within six months, that figure increased to 35%. Also, about 18% of those getting $1,000 a month had a full-time job at the start of the program. That percentage increased to 25%. 

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