Commission for Fairness to be launched as Hull asks to be first trial city for Universal Basic Income

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A Commission for Fairness is to be set up in Hull after councillors in the city wrote to the Chancellor asking to be the first area to trial Universal Basic Income (UBI).

Councillors voted earlier this month to show they wanted to test the income system in the city, with plans suggesting each person could be given a set amount to live on.

Liberal Democrat Councillor Paul Drake-Davis who moved the motion.

Liberal Democrat Councillor Paul Drake-Davis who moved the motion.

And now local politicians have written to Sajid Javid asking for permission to go ahead.

The letter, from council leader Matt Jukes, set out how an independent Fairness Commission would be set up in April, and asked Mr Javid whether there was help available from the Treasury to start setting up a UBI Lab to look into introducing the scheme in Hull.

Liberal Democrat Councillor Paul Drake-Davis who moved the initial motion, said: “I’m delighted that all parties on the council voted in support of the idea of establishing a pilot in Hull. We are calling for central government to pilot Universal Basic Income in this progressive pioneering city.

“Here in Hull my Liberal Democrat colleagues and I see the problems residents face, the current welfare system is failing them. UBI will give residents the power to take control of their lives and free themselves from the worry of financial insecurity.”

Liberal Democrat councillor Jack Haines.

Liberal Democrat councillor Jack Haines.

Councillor Jack Haines added: “This is a fresh policy idea that has the potential to change lives, but we need to trial it first. Hull has long been left behind by central Government but it is an ideal place to test this innovative idea. We believe it offers everyone, especially hard-working people, freedom from poverty, insecurity and financial worry."

The Treasury has previously dismissed the idea.

Following a report from Professor Guy Standing, a professor at SOAS University, last year a spokesman said they were "committed to supporting working people keep more of what they earn, while providing a strong and sustainable safety net for those who need it".