From 10h00 to 12h15 on Monday 14th September 2020, ACT Ubumbano is convening a Learning Hub to reflect on how community voice is amplified in calling for a universal Basic Income Grant (BIG). Isobel Frye from Studies in Poverty and Inequality Institute, and Skhumbuzo Zuma from Church Land Programme will lead the conversation. Click here to register to participate.
The revival of the campaign for a universal is important for South Africa and the region. The COVID-19 lockdown has exposed the inadequacy of social security safety net provisions, and has driven poor people with few livelihood and social security options to an even more precarious position. The income support of a BIG can provide significant relief to poor communities, yet it faces strong opposition from political and economic conservatives. To successfully counter this resistance, civil society organisations and activists will need to force change by proving the technical feasibility of a BIG, and ensure that pressure is brought to bear on decision makers through mass action and other forms of advocacy.
In this advocacy work, the voice of people most affected is of critical importance.
- What strategies and coalitions will be needed to ensure their experiences and concerns are reflected in and inform policy conversations?
- How do campaigning and advocacy organisations ensure that people have the necessary technical knowledge to articulate their BIG-related demands independently and effectively?
- What role do community organisers play in connecting the technical policy issues to community struggles?
- What do solidarity networks and their participating organisations need to do to develop and implement a truly mass-based campaign?
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