Half of Londoners support a universal basic income (UBI), a new poll has found – but proposals for a trial in the capital have been rejected by the Labour-led London Assembly.
Calls for a UBI have grown after the pandemic highlighted the need to build financial security. And a poll by YouGov, commissioned by Green Party members on the London Assembly, found plenty of support – the highest from younger people aged 25 to 49. Of the 1,166 people surveyed, just 22 per cent opposed the model.
A universal basic income is a regular payment that is given to everyone in society to create a minimum income floor. The money is unconditional with no strings attached to dictate how it should be spent.
But when community-based trials were proposed by the Green Assembly members during a debate on mayor of London Sadiq Khan’s budget, the Labour-majority Assembly voted against them – by 19 votes to four.
The motion was proposed by Green Assembly member Zack Polanski, but Len Duvall, Labour’s leader in the Assembly, shot it down.
He said: “In terms of universal basic income, no. No. We cannot have an open-ended commitment on a pilot scheme quite frankly, at this moment in time where we promote it as a regional authority.