End of the B-Mincome pilot project to combat poverty and social exclusionThe B-Mincome project, jointly funded with the EU, was rolled out in ten neighbourhoods in the Besòs area. The goal was an analysis of combining monthly municipal income for households with active social and labour inclusion policies.
The two-year trial of the B-Mincome project has come to an end. The European programme enabled 952 families in the ten Besòs neighbourhoods (84% of them households headed by women), some 3,700 people in all, to receive an average of 480 euros a month over a two-year period. From this point on, social services are expected to continue providing assessment for the families so that they can access the social benefits they are entitled to.
Initial results from an analysis of the situation of people taking part show that having a minimum guaranteed income increases their level of well-being and happiness, as well as fostering participation in communal activities. The income also reduces financial uncertainty, reduces the likelihood of suffering mental illness and generates greater overall satisfaction. Entities taking part in the project and the City Council will now start a detailed evaluation of all indicators, which should be presented in the second quarter of 2020.
Over the two years of the B-Mincome pilot project, the City Council invested 10.9 million euros in it: 8.4 million to fund Municipal Inclusion Support (SMI) payments through the Municipal Institute of Social Services, and 2.5 million euros to fund the employment plans from Barcelona Activa. Additional funding for the project came in the form of 4.9 million euros from the EU, through its Urban Innovative Actions (UIA) programme.
Continuity for community policies
The B-Mincome trial has helped the City Council identify measures which need strengthening straight away. To this end, the application of community policies in the city’s most underprivileged neighbourhoods will be strengthened in conjunction the Neighbourhood Plan.
As regards the citizen economic resource (REC), an alternative municipal currency equivalent to the value of the euro, work will continue to implement it in the Besòs area as a means of payment to boost the local economy.
Guaranteed citizen income
The City Council has renewed its demand for the Government of Catalonia, as the body responsible, to apply the current guaranteed citizen income more effectively and definitively approve regulations which have been pending for over two years.