Tags: switzerland | 2500-francs-per-adult | monthly | dole | vote

Switzerland's 2,500-Francs-Per-Adult Monthly Dole Up for Vote

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By    |   Tuesday, 24 May 2016 12:39 PM

Switzerland's enlightened do-gooders want to give 2,500 francs a month to every adult citizen to replace various welfare benefits, according to Bloomberg News, but the government itself  is fighting the "unconditional basic income" measure being voted on June 5.

The roughly $2,519 would barely get an individual barely above the poverty line in Switzerland, which Bloomberg calls one of the world's most expensive countries.

While unconditional basic income has sparked interest in other countries – like Canada, the Netherlands and Finland – Bloomberg said polls in Switzerland are not in the measure's favor.

According to a poll in April, only 24 percent of voters supported the measure while another four percent was undecided, said Fortune magazine.

"Switzerland is the first country worldwide to hold a national referendum on the introduction of an Unconditional Basic Income," said a statement on the basic income website supporting the measure. "Despite being arguably the most conservative country in the world, many typical Swiss factors are building a solid ground for the introduction of a UBI: Political stability, economic wealth, and a strong liberal culture of self-determination."

The Swiss government, though, argued that the measure would become a disincentive to work and will drive taxes higher, said Fortune. The government also charged that unconditional basic income would shrink the skilled workforce, driving businesses out of the country.

"Backers of the plan argue the measure would cost 200 billion francs a year, which could be funded in part through current state social welfare programs," Bloomberg said in April when the last poll on the subject was released.

"Opponents, including parliament and the government, say it would require a massive increase in taxes ….," Bloomberg said then.

Gabriel Barta, vice president of the Basic Income Earth Network, told The Local that even if the measure passed on June 5, the hard work of figuring out how to finance the dole, implement it and answer other questions would take years and could be more more than 10 years before anyone receive the first UBI paycheck.

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Switzerland's enlightened do-gooders want to give 2,500 francs a month to every adult citizen to replace various welfare benefits, but the government itself is fighting the "unconditional basic income" measure being voted on June 5.
switzerland, 2500-francs-per-adult, monthly, dole, vote
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2016-39-24
Tuesday, 24 May 2016 12:39 PM
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