A new report on a recently concluded statewide guaranteed income pilot program with immigrant families shows how unrestricted cash assistance programs allowed low-wage earners to pursue better jobs, increase their educational levels, and improve other critical outcomes for their children.
“The NM Economic Relief Working Group’s 18-month guaranteed income (GI) pilot selected 330 mixed-immigration status households to receive unconditional direct cash transfers of $500 monthly for 12 months from February 2022 to February 2023. One-third of households sampled came from rural communities and two-thirds from urban communities. An additional extension was granted to 50 randomly-selected mixed-status households to receive $500 monthly for an additional 6 months (February 2023-August 2023).
Immigrant families were chosen for the pilot because polling showed these families struggled significantly more than the general population during the pandemic because of numerous exclusions from the country’s safety net; these exclusions were due to lack of a social security number even if the household had U.S.-citizen children.
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