We invite voters in the upcoming 2020 Irish Elections to contact your local candidates who support basic income. The following is a summary of pro-basic income parties and candidates as well as links to their manifestos, policy proposals and contact details. Let them know by email or through social media how you appreciate their support for a universal basic income policy.
The Green Party manifesto (p.33) contains a detailed policy item on basic income:
7.1 Universal Basic Income (UBI)
We believe that the current system of social welfare payments should be reformed to support all recipients and to maximise their educational, social and employment opportunities. This requires an approach that can respond to people’s needs throughout the life course and provide security of income and other benefits to all Irish families through ill-health, financial difficulty, employment uncertainty or the demands of caring for a family.
A system of UBI represents a significant realignment of our current economic commitments. UBI operates as a standard payment to every individual that is resident in the State without reference to their means or their ability/availability for employment. It is non-means tested and does not increase or decrease as someone’s income changes.
We propose to move towards a system of UBI through gradual reform of the tax and welfare system. We will build on existing structures such as child benefit, the State pension and the Department of Social Protection and Employment Affairs working-age payments. Specific measures to progress the principles of the UBI include the following.
› Introducing a trial study of UBI, similar to those carried out in Finland and Canada.
› Preventing child benefit from becoming eroded by inflation.
› Merging the contributory and non-contributory State pensions into a universal pension as recommended by Social Justice Ireland.
› Introduce a refundable tax credit to supplement the income of part time workers.
See here for all contact details for your local Green Party candidate.
The Fianna Fáil manifesto (p.34) contains a passage proposing to establish a commission on basic income:
Establish a Basic Income Commission
The global economy has changed immensely since the Beveridge report set out the basis of the modern welfare state. The transformative impact of technology and rise of Artificial Intelligence will create a fresh challenge to our welfare system. The concept of a Basic Income payment to every citizen is a new approach that is committed to underpinning a dignified life for all citizens. Fianna Fáil believes we should explore this idea as a future general policy to meet the challenges we face as a country in the 21st century.
• We will set up a Basic Income Commission. The evidence drawn will then be used to shape Social Welfare policy into the future. This will cost €1m based on similar models.
See here for all contact details for your local Fianna Fáil candidate.
Notable Individual Candidates
- Dave Quinn (Social Democrats; Dún Laoghaire) is a long-time member of Basic Income Ireland, supports basic income and has presented the fully costed “Model D” plan for implementing basic income in Ireland.
- Patrick Noonan (Independent; Dublin Rathdown) presents a detailed policy proposal here for a €900/month basic income.
- Róisín Uí Bhroin (People Before Profit; Kildare South) was in contact with Basic Income Ireland and has pledged her support for a basic income in Ireland. She is particularly interested in seeing basic income form part of a coherent climate policy.
If you are a candidate running in the 2020 Irish Elections and you would like to be included in this list, feel free to reach out to us at email@example.com with a brief description of your position on basic income.
If you support the idea of basic income, we encourage you to congratulate your local candidates for supporting basic income by email or through social media. You can find the contact details of your local pro-basic income candidates here.
We have not found evidence of other parties’ manifestos supporting basic income. However, if you are a candidate running through another party or as an independent and you support basic income, or if you know a candidate who fits that description, feel free to reach out to us at firstname.lastname@example.org.