Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms joined 10 other mayors from across the country to announce Mayors for a Guaranteed Income, a coalition of mayors that will explore cash payment programs in their cities for guaranteed income programs.

“I am honored to join this powerful coalition of mayors as a founding member in this privately funded pilot program,” Bottoms said. “We know that economic security is a right and a necessity for all to thrive in this country. I look forward to the meaningful work we will do to continue to push our communities forward.”

A guaranteed income is a monthly cash payment given directly to individuals, empowering recipients to address their most urgent needs and providing a cushion for unpredictable expenses, external shocks, and volatility. It is unconditional and is meant to supplement, rather than replace, the existing social safety net.

The founding mayors of the network include: Michael D. Tubbs from Stockton, CA; Chokwe Antar Lumumba from Jackson, MS; Melvin Carter from St. Paul, MN; Ras J. Baraka from Newark, NJ; Aja Brown from Compton, CA; Eric Garcetti from Los Angeles, CA; Adrian Perkins from Shreveport, LA; Libby Schaaf from Oakland, CA; Victoria R. Woodards from Tacoma, WA; and Stephen Benjamin from Columbia, SC.

In the US, wealth and income inequality has reached historic highs. Nearly 40 percent of Americans cannot afford a single $400 emergency, and rising income inequality is compounded by a growing racial wealth gap.

The median white worker made 28 percent more than the typical Black worker and 35 percent more than the median Latino worker in the last quarter of 2019, and the median wealth of white families is more than $100,000 while the median wealth of Black families is approximately $10,000. COVID-19 has further exposed the economic fragility of most American households and has disproportionately impacted Black and brown people.

Mayors for a Guaranteed Income is founded in partnership with the Economic Security Project. The coalition is also announcing a new partnership with What Works Cities, a Bloomberg Philanthropies initiative, to elevate lessons learned and expand best practices to additional cities across the country.

The United States Conference of Mayors (USCM) unanimously passed the USCM resolution at the organization’s 88th annual meeting in Washington, D.C., in support of a Guaranteed Income.

The resolution calls for the advancement of the following principles:
Advocate for a guaranteed income at the local, state, and federal level.
Invest in narrative change efforts to highlight the lived experiences of economic insecurity.
Invite all cities to join this effort, and provide technical assistance and funding support for new pilots.

To learn more about Mayors for a Guaranteed Income visit

(Photo: Andrew Harnik/Associated Press)

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