Large City Slated To Kick Off New Assistance Program Targeting Homeless Trans, 'Non-Binary' People


It has been recently unveiled that the city of Denver has kicked off a plan to hand out free phones and roughly $12,000 apiece to over 140 homeless women and "non-binary" and transgender people over the course of the next year as a piece of a much larger partnership with a local nonprofit group, as stated in a local report.

The funds, which total well over $1.7 million, is slated to come out of a fund of $2 million stemming from the federal American Rescue Plan Act under a plan approved by the members of the city council, as reported by Axios. The money will end up being no strings attached and effectively put Denver as the most recent Democratic-run city to carry out its own universal basic income experiment.

"The Denver Basic Income Project is an opportunity to explore how the philanthropic community and the private sector can augment public support for those living in poverty, particularly our unhoused neighbors, and extend that hand up to stability," expressed Denver Mayor Michael Hancock in a release.

The funds from the city will be handed out via the Denver Basic Income Project, a nonprofit that seeks to scrounge up some $9 million in order to hand it out to a group of almost 820 homeless women and transgender and non-binary people.

Mark Donovan, the founder of the Denver Basic Income Project, stated to Axios that the vast majority of the funding for this effort has been sent over from Charities, including the Colorado Health Foundation and the Denver Foundation. The group Donovan runs will be the ones to pick the people eligible for the income stipends.

"As excited as we are about it, this isn’t something you can call in and apply for," explained the deputy director of the city’s Homelessness Resolution Fund, Angie Nelson, to the site.

Denver sports an estimated 3,500 homeless people but only 2,000 spots in their shelters, as reported by  DenverHomelessOutLoud.org. Most end up camping inside of tents scattered around public spaces, which ends up being an extreme nuisance to businesses and residents.

Despite the fact that many city officials outright deny it, quite a few suspect that the mass expansion of the homeless population is heavily tied to the area's legalization of marijuana that took place roughly ten years ago. The executive director of Denver’s St. Francis Center, Tom Luehrs, stated to CNN back in 2018 that marijuana was a factor that pulled transients into Denver and into his homeless shelters.

"We’ve seen that over the past several years," he explained.

As of writing, the group is slated to hand out $6,500 upfront to 260 people, then $500 per month for an 11-month stint; 260 people $1,000 per month for a year; and 300 people $50 per month as part of a new experiment concerning the overall effectiveness of guaranteed basic income. Additionally, all participants will be getting free cellular devices and service for one full year.

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