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Initiative for pilot test – all Bernese should soon be able to register for a basic income

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A parliamentary initiative aims to test 300 Bernese people to earn an unconditional basic income for three years. Everyone is allowed to register.

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Will 300 people in Bern soon be able to test the unconditional basic income?

20min/Matthias Spicher

Nine parties have corresponding plans and will submit a parliamentary initiative to the city council on Thursday.

Nine parties have corresponding plans and will submit a parliamentary initiative to the city council on Thursday.

20min/Matthias Spicher

The test with 300 people should run for three years and cost nine million - including scientific support.

The test with 300 people should run for three years and cost nine million – including scientific support.

20min / Taddeo Cerletti

  • Nine parties submitted an initiative for an unconditional basic income to the Bern city council on Thursday.

  • The test with 300 people should run for three years and cost nine million – including scientific support.

  • The political chances of the initiative are good.

Bern should test the unconditional basic income – at least that’s what nine parties are calling for in a parliamentary initiative that they want to submit to the city council meeting on November 11th. The four parliamentary groups GFL / EPP, GB / JA !, AL / PdA / GaP and SP / JUSO want to instruct the municipal council to carry out a pilot test in the city of Bern over the next three years, as they write in a joint media release.

“Digitization processes generally lead to changes in the world of work and social systems that are difficult to assess,” says the communiqué. “These developments will continue to intensify and accentuate in the coming years, especially due to the consequences of the Covid 19 pandemic.” The answer to this needs social innovations, new approaches and space for experimentation.

As part of the pilot scheme for an unconditional basic income, 300 people are to be provided with a basic income for three years. At the same time, 1,800 other people are also to be scientifically supported as a comparison group without a basic income.

Registration possible for everyone

All city residents should be able to register for the experiment. “The people in both groups are determined in a mixture of targeted allocation based on socio-demographic data and a subsequent random selection” – according to the plan.

The initiators estimate the cost of the experiment at nine million francs, spread over three years and including the scientific monitoring and evaluation.

In 2016, the Swiss electorate clearly crushed the basic income at the federal level with over 75 percent no. Since then, there have been repeated attempts to run test runs in cities. In Zurich, for example, a corresponding initiative was submitted in May, and in Regensdorf ZH a citizen dared to take a step forward. Crowdfunding failed in Rheinau ZH in 2018.

In the Bern city council, the parliamentary initiative should get through without any problems. The four submitting parliamentary groups have a comfortable majority of 50 out of 80 seats.

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