Front and Center: ‘Politicians Who Believe Guaranteed Income Programs Discourage People From Working Are Wrong’

Back for its third year, Front and Center is a groundbreaking Ms. series that offers first-person accounts of Black mothers living in Jackson, Miss., receiving a guaranteed income. First launched in 2018, the Magnolia Mother’s Trust (MMT) is about to enter its fifth cohort, bringing the number of moms served to more than 400 and making it the longest-running guaranteed income program in the country. Across the country, guaranteed income pilots like MMT are finding that recipients are overwhelmingly using their payments for basic needs like groceries, housing and transportation.

“I’ve always had a good relationship with my kids, but MMT has allowed me to say ‘yes’ more. … My son and I both have birthdays coming up and I told him we could plan something fun, maybe go out of town. I’ve never taken them out of town before.”