Universal Basic Income

Organization(s): ITUC
Year: 2018
Language: English
PDF of Resource

Universal basic income refers to unconditional cash transfers to everyone in a society regardless of their income, employment status, job search, or other key criteria. The concept differs from traditional forms of social protection, which tend to provide income support or services to people experiencing specific contingencies, i.e., due to unemployment, old age, disability, parenthood etc. Moreover, social protection benefits, particularly those for working age, are often provided conditionally upon one’s financial means and/or work-search requirements.

The concept of basic income been increasingly championed by some academics, policy makers and business leaders as a response to increasing financial insecurity that many workers face due to the increase in temporary, low-paid and atypical forms of work, as well as a response to anticipated job losses due to declining industries, automation and globalisation. The idea of introducing a universal basic income has increasingly gained ground in mainstream political debates and policy discussions.

Related Principles

Universality of Protection

States parties to major human rights instruments related to economic, social and cultural rights such as the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (ICESCR) have an immediate minimum core obligation to ensure the satisfaction of, at the very least, minimum essential levels of all economic, social and cultural rights such as the right […]

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