A county in Houston, Texas is gearing up to launch a new basic income program that will provide monthly cash assistance to nearly 2,000 families.
In a new press release, Harris County says it is giving away more than $17 million to 1,928 households who are struggling to make ends meet through the Uplift Harris program.
For one and a half years, the guaranteed income pilot program will distribute $500 each month to families living below 200% of the federal poverty line.
The signup process will be open from January 8th to 26th. Households living in one of the 10 “high-poverty” zip codes and those who are already participating in the county’s Accessing Coordinated Care and Empowering Self-Sufficiency (ACCESS) program are welcome to apply.
The funding will come from a $20.5 million grant from the federal American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA). The Harris County Commissioners Court approved of using the funds for the program in June 2023.
Harris County selected the international nonprofit GiveDirectly to administer the program.
Precinct One Commissioner Rodney Ellis says Uplift Harris is an investment in the future of the county.
“Families are working but unable to make ends meet. Nearly four in 10 Harris County residents can’t afford a $400 emergency expense. Oftentimes, these families are led by essential workers who keep our county moving, like teacher aides and healthcare workers.
By providing an income floor through a guaranteed income, Uplift Harris has the potential to significantly improve the lives of thousands of residents by fostering economic stability and prosperity.”
The first batch of no-strings-attached payments will be handed out as early as March 2024.Don't Miss a Beat – Subscribe to get email alerts delivered directly to your inbox
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