to Vote on Guaranteed $2800 Monthly Income for All Adults
Swiss may grant unconditional income for all
- In a move to combat growing pay inequality, Swiss citizens will
vote on whether to give every adult in Switzerland a basic
BERNE — Switzerland will hold a vote on whether to introduce a
basic income for all adults, in a further sign of growing public
activism over pay inequality since the financial crisis.
A grassroots committee is calling for all adults in Switzerland
to receive an unconditional income of 2,500 Swiss francs — about
$2,800 — per month from the state, with the aim of providing a
financial safety net for the population.
Organizers submitted more than the 100,000 signatures needed to
call a referendum on Friday and tipped a truckload of 8 million
five-cent coins outside the parliament building in Bern, one for
each person living in Switzerland.
Under Swiss law, citizens can organize popular initiatives that
allow the channeling of public anger into direct political
action. The country usually holds several referenda a year.
In March, Swiss voters backed some of the world's strictest
controls on executive pay, forcing public companies to give
shareholders a binding vote on compensation.
A separate proposal to limit monthly executive pay to no more
than what the company's lowest-paid staff earn in a year, the
so-called 1:12 initiative, faces a popular vote on Nov. 24.
The initiative's organizing committee said the basic income
could partly be financed through money from social insurance
systems in Switzerland.
The timing of the vote has yet to be announced, pending official
guidance from the government.
Reporting by Denis Balibouse, writing by Alice Baghdjian
This article was originally published at
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