Volksinitiative

An unconditional basic income is a logical response to how the economy is evolving

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Ralph Kundig face

Ralph Kundig – Published on Friday, February 5th, 2016 on LeTemps.ch (FR)

An unconditional basic income (UBI) for everyone, the subject of a popular vote in Switzerland on 5 June 2016, is - according to Ralph Kundig - the logical response to developments in the economy. These imply less and less connection between employment and the economy, and consequently between employment and the social safety net. Ralph is the president of BIEN-Switzerland, the association fighting to introduce an UBI in Switzerland

Big data, learning machines, digitization, open source: all are developments which threaten jobs, even highly qualified ones. Unemployment is rising and social security costs are mushrooming, with fewer and fewer workers to pay for it and feeble economic growth. The way things are going means that neither the economy nor social security can any longer remain dependent on employment.

We are already seeing that salaries no longer bear much relation to the usefulness of the work done. The proportion of the population whose revenue is derived from work is a mere 40%; all the others accomplish tasks which are equally necessary to value creation but are unpaid, such as caring for family, learning, volunteer work or art and culture. In the 21st century, the concept of paid work as the sole source of income, social integration and human value creation has become obsolete.

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It's official: we'll vote on June 5th 2016

On January 27th 2016, the Swiss government announced on which initiatives we'll vote on June 5th 2016, and one them will be about the unconditional basic income. The campaign has thus officially begun!

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Our networks are organizing and are constantly gaining new enthusiastic members, who want to be a part of the historic vote. Our funds, which are necessary to finance the campaign, are also growing thanks to your support. Small, like the 5 CHF/month by Duccio or big, like the 10'000 CHF by Clément, every donation counts! It's small streams that give birth to big rivers.

It's hard to say whether the referendum will be a success or not, as too many people have never heard of unconditional basic income. They are very vulnerable to the misinformation of its detractors. Our goal is that people get objective information. For this, everybody can help: talk about it, send an information mail to your friends, share our Facebook posts and invite your friends to like our page. You can also take part in our actions and participate in the campaign funding. [+]

RTS puts the spotlight on basic income

At 19.30 on Tuesday, 15 December

We were treated to a beautiful subject on the basis of income at 19.30, with explanations, graphics and testimonials. We celebrate and we send a very big thank you to Magali Rochat and Darius Rochebin (movie in French):

We wish to clarify, however, that the unconditional basic income does not completely replace the UI, contrary to what was said.

At 12.45 on Friday, December 18th

Martina Chyba, head of the section society and culture of RTS, and convinced of the basic income, opposite Elisabeth Eckert, Head of the Economics Section Matin Dimanche (movie in French):

The National Council sweeps the initiative after three hours of debate

The National Council rejected the initiative by 146 votes against, 14 for and 12 abstentions, a result that is not surprising considering the novelty of our proposal. The next step is consideration by the Commission on Social Security and Public Health of the States Council Thursday 8 and Friday, 9 October, and the vote by the States (see the attached open letter of information we sent to the Commission). The sessions calendar shows it is entirely plausible that the initiative is submitted to popular vote already in June 2016.

vote panel
146 against – 12 abstentions – 14 for the initiative
(The vote was on the suggestion of rejection emitted by the Commission)

Hereafter extracts from the speech of M. Andreas Gross (Socialist/Zurich) at the National Council : [+]

National coordination meeting for Switzerland, 17 January, Zurich

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The groups in German Switzerland planning for the initiative’s voting campaign have organized a meeting in Zurich, and are cordially inviting everyone already involved (or who would like to get involved) in the voting campaign, to attend. The meeting will be an opportunity to exchange ideas, plans and our enthusiasm for convincing the population to say “Yes” to the coming popular vote on the initiative.

Saturday, 17 January 2015, 14 :00 - 17 :00
Au Premier, Zurich Central Station.

Meeting open to all!

Information : Unconditional Basic Income coordination meeting

Invitation: [+]

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