Guaranteed Income

Peggy O'Mara
10 min readFeb 7, 2024

Building the next economy

Photo 138265736 © Fizkes |

Guaranteed income is a type of cash transfer program that provides regular, unconditional, and unrestricted payments to individuals or households. Guaranteed income may be targeted toward people below a certain income level and is seen as an instrument to help alleviate poverty. A guaranteed income is different from a universal basic income, which is also unconditional, but is not targeted and is for everyone.

What is a guaranteed income?

According to the Jain Family Institute Guaranteed Income Toolkit, key components of an evidence-based guaranteed income program are cash transfers that are:

  • unconditional
  • unrestricted
  • recurring on a regular basis
  • in tandem with other safety net programs
Photo 182497833 | Food Stamps © Jonathan Weiss |

The importance of protecting benefits

In tandem with other safety net programs means that the money received from a guaranteed income pilot not be used to reduce an individual’s public benefits, such as Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) or Medicaid. It is important for…



Peggy O'Mara

Peggy O’Mara is an award winning journalist. She was the Editor and Publisher of Mothering Magazine for over 30 years. Her focus is Family, Health, and Justice.