“Changes to the Basic income start from a very abstract idea of employability. To say that if you are employable you are not entitled to income support, despite being poor, is not only wrong, but also misleading as to why people are poor. It strikes me a lot that we don’t talk about at least the minimum salary and labor policies concerning the creation and growth of jobs. We only talk about potential workers who are not working because of their fault, because this is implicitly suggested”. Thus, to the microphones of “24 in the morning” (Radio24), the sociologist Chiara Saracenoformer president of the scientific committee for the evaluation of basic income for the Draghi governmentcomments on the maneuver of Meloni government and changes to the rules relating to citizenship income.
Saraceno adds: “It is typical of this government, but unfortunately it is also very widespread, this idea according to which if a poor person is employable, he should not get anything because it is his fault if he does not work. It was certainly a mistake to propose basic income as a measure of active employment policy, while it should basically be an income support policy for those in poverty so that they can have a decent life. After that, it is clear that for people theoretically capable of working it is important to field active labor policies, which should exist anyway“.
And he explains: “Making income support conditional on being employable is absolutely wrong, it doesn’t happen anywhere. In all countries where the minimum income has existed for a very long time, there is first of all the guarantee of income. Then for those who are able to be employed there are active labor policies, incentives, stimuli, even controls and punishments. But there are. It’s not that I don’t give you income because you are theoretically employable – he continues – Even the proposal of the European Commission on the minimum income for the poor, approved in September and about to arrive at the European Council of Ministers in the coming months, clarifies precisely this: for the poor there must be the guarantee of a decent income without distinction between those who are employable and those who are not employable. Then serious policies must be implemented for those who can be employed so that they can access good work”.
The sociologist concludes: “How did these people live before the basic income? Very badjust read the recent report by Save the children on child poverty. It’s not that these people don’t work, but they often struggle with undeclared or precarious jobs. There are also poor people who work regularlybut they don’t have enough income to keep them out of poverty and so they go to eat at Caritas. That is, they do not have a dignified life. This is unacceptable. If it’s okay with us that those who are unfortunate live badly, then we remove everything ”.