Everyone In Switzerland Might Get A Government Allowance Each Month

Next month, Swiss citizens will decide if the government will implement a basic income for everyone in the country, but voters seem to be split.
Posted at 3:32 PM, May 06, 2016

If countries were parents, Switzerland could be the first in the world to give its children an allowance.

Next month Swiss citizens will decide if they want the country to implement a guaranteed $2,600 paycheck after taxes every month.

It's called a basic income, and it's been considered in other countries — like Canada.

But not all Swiss residents will be pocketing that cash.

It works like this: If you make $600 a month, the government would fill in that remaining $2,000.

While Parliament is largely against the issue, voters seem somewhat split.

One poll suggests 49 percent of voters would vote yes for a basic income and 43 percent would say no thanks. But the remaining 8 percent of voters said they might be swayed based on how much cash they'd get.

One of the country's conservative lawmakers said passing the basic income would "put at risk a system which is not perfect, but ... motivates people to work and get training."

But the movement behind the legislation says, "Every person in Switzerland will know that his/her right to a dignified life will have been recognized."

This video includes clips from Coronet FilmsEuropean AlternativesSwiss ParliamentFacebook / Swiss Campaign for the Universal Basic Income and images from SteFou! / CC BY 2.0 and Martin Abegglen / CC BY SA 2.0