SEED logo Stockton Economic Empowerment Development

On Fridays We Fight! Income Insecurity With SEED

Stockton Economic Empowerment Demonstration, commonly referred to as SEED, is a guaranteed income demonstration. Let’s take a closer look at what that means.

Guaranteed income, to put it simply, is a set amount of money a person or household would receive annually. The concept goes far deeper than that of course, but you may be surprised to learn that it’s not a new concept. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr began to advocate for a guaranteed income in his book, Where Do We Go From Here: Chaos or Community? published in 1967. Jordan Weissmann, former Atlantic senior associate editor, helps to explain Dr. King’s vision to end poverty in this insightful article. Reading excerpts of Dr. King’s book, you can see that his vision is as relevant then as it is today. Guaranteed income, also called universal income, is currently in practice in Alaska. The concept is a part of current political campaigns. Stockton, California is the first U.S. city to practice a demonstration project in collaboration with researchers, non-profit organizations, and The Office of Mayor Michael Tubbs.

RT: @stocktondemo will share current SEED results on Saturday, October 5, 2019 at the Data Dashboard Launch Event. Join us at the Haggin Museum, 1201 N Pershing Ave, Stockton, California, from 1:30 PM – 3:00 PM. I’m so interested to see how things are going with the guaranteed income demonstration! See you there!

SEED randomly sent thousands of invitation mailers to households within neighborhoods where their average median income was approximately $46,000. Of these, 125 are participating in the 18-month long demonstration. There are no strings attached to the $500 monthly income however participants will submit regular surveys on how they decide to spend their money as well as other information. This data will be collected to help answer several questions.

Looking into its Pre-Analysis Plan, SEED will research three main questions. How does guaranteed income impact financial uncertainty? How does this change in income effect one’s financial well-being, mental health, and physical wellness? Does guaranteed income increase one’s control of their future? After analyzing the data, the researchers intend to answer these questions and to place real stories with the concept of guaranteed income.

How you can be an advocate for SEED

Understand the facts. The Community Data Dashboard was released on Saturday, October 5, 2019 to a standing room audience at the Haggin Museum. Access the data to learn more about this program, the people involved and how the money is being used by participants.

Follow SEED on social networks to stay informed and share their news.

What does income insecurity mean to you?

What does income insecurity mean to you? What thoughts come to mind? What do you think people should know about financial uncertainty and the possibilities of a guaranteed income? When I think about guaranteed income, I remember my own struggles. I remember working hard but still missing payments for very important needs like my car payment, electricity, and water. I remember picking up a second job to pay our house payment and bills. I remember how much I missed my family while working that graveyard shift. What could a monthly guaranteed income of $500 have done to help our family at that time? I found the answer in one participant’s story.

The money has made Jovan Bravo happier. The 31-year-old Stockton native and construction worker is married and has three children, ages 13, 8 and 4. He said he didn’t see enough of his children when he worked six days a week to pay the bills. That changed when he started getting $500 a month. Now he only works one Saturday a month. He uses the other Saturdays to take his kids to the amusement park and ride bikes with them in the park. Sept 3, 2019

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