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Applications For Baltimore's Guaranteed Income Pilot Program Open Next Month

BALTIMORE (WJZ) — Applications will open next month for Baltimore's guaranteed income pilot program.

Mayor Brandon Scott announced the initiative in February 2022, joining a group of mayors across the country to create the program.

The group, Mayors for a Guaranteed Income, advocates for cities to implement direct, recurring cash payments to citizens in a bid to create momentum for a federal guaranteed income program.

Mayor Scott announced Tuesday in his State of the City address that the application for Baltimore's program will go live May 2. The program was originally set to launch last Fall.

The city is partnering with the CASH Campaign of Maryland, a nonprofit organization that assists low-income residents, to administer the program. Mayor Scott said the nonprofit brings "a wealth of experience in benefits counseling and wrap-around services."

"We all know that Baltimore is the birthplace of redlining," Scott said Tuesday. "That legacy shows up in the stark inequalities of our city still present today. Research shows that guaranteed income projects have resulted in lower poverty, higher earnings and savings. Guaranteed income has proven to be a key tool in improving economic mobility and advancing racial and gender equity. This is an investment in the future of our city and our young families by providing direct support so they can thrive."

Similar programs in other cities have given a small number of households a guaranteed income of $500-$1,000 a month over 18-24 months. Some were randomly selected from low-income households, while others targeted specific populations including Black female-led households and Black mothers, or marginalized residents such as returning citizens and undocumented immigrants.

Details on Baltimore's pilot program have not yet been disclosed. To find out when applications go live on May 2, sign up for the CASH Campaign of Maryland's email list.

For more information on the mayor-led guaranteed income movement, visit the organization's website.

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