Tuesday, April 23, 2024

Denver Enacts Basic Income Project For Homeless

The Denver City Council has approved $2M to go to over women, families, transgender, and non-binary homeless people at up to $12,000 a year through the Denver Basic Income Project. The program offers the money in three different packages so they can collect data on which version supports people the most. 

The funding for this comes from Biden’s American Rescue Plan Act, signed into law in March of 2021 as part of a COVID Stimulus Package, according to Yahoo News. 

According to the project’s mission statement, “The Denver Basic Income Project serves individuals who are unhoused by examining the impact of direct cash distributions in an effort to encourage a healthier society centered around human thriving.”

Healthier society? Human thriving? Perhaps they misspelled and meant to say, “in an effort to encourage a growing government centered around disempowering individuals”. 

As they say, if you want something to grow, subsidize it. Well, here we are, USA, one of our most popular western cities is giving no strings attached money to hundreds of people that live on the streets. Sure, there are people out there that really do benefit from programs that support them. Social Security, for example, supports many, many of our low income elderly. This program, however, is next level. We can only imagine how big it will be next year, or 10 years from now, when our tax dollars are supporting literally tens of thousands of people across the country. Speaking anecdotally, the people living in the street tent communities of expensive cities like Denver or Seattle seem to have deeper issues than just a lack of $12,000. Serious addiction, mental illness, and an absence of a healthy community and family will likely not be fixed by this program.

This program is alarming for a number of reasons. Of course the spent tax dollars, enabling of those that have given up on life or are taking advantage of the system, and increased government reach are signs of more doom and gloom for our nation. Additionally, the way some outlets are reporting this as a benefit for transgender and nonbinary people and women adds to the greater concern in our world of female erasure and the discouragement of reproduction and the nuclear family. 

All in all, we can predict the number of Denver’s homeless population and trans-identified folks increasing like mad due to this incentive even more than it has been since the pandemic kicked off. Hopefully, this is not a feature coming to a city near you.