This week Kelly Moore, Avalon Board member and tenant, spoke at the Ann Arbor City Council meeting in support of a Universal Basic Income pilot program. Here are her public comments:
Hello, my name is Kelly Moore and I am a resident of Avalon Housing and live in Ward 1. I also serve as a member of the Board of Trustees for Avalon Housing in addition to being a member of VOCAL, Avalon’s resident leadership council. I am here to talk about the Universal Basic Income-ARPA funds.
I am a mother of 2 sons, and have managed to support all of us over the years despite our income limitations. It has not been easy with all the barriers I have faced. As a single mom, I will always prioritize meeting our basic needs over our less urgent needs such as clothes, transportation needs, and many times my diabetic supplies. I, however, am not alone.
As part of being an active member in my community, I see a lot of my neighbors struggling to provide simple needs which are many times passed over due to the lack of income, inflation, and cost of rent. This has only gotten more difficult with the pandemic. Unreliable expensive childcare and school schedules have limited people’s abilities to keep their jobs because most of my neighbors are single parents, and some of us have health issues that limit our ability to work during the pandemic.
Despite not having a lot, my neighbors and I manage our money the best we can. Paying rent, and making sure food is on the table. Other needs like clothes, day care, and transportation costs have been put to the side. The day to day stress of barely making ends meet takes a toll on our mental and physical health.
The U.B.I. pilot comes at a critical time which many of us need. This extra help will help us get back on our feet.
Every public benefit we access has strings attached, bureaucracy to wade through, and things we have to prove. Maintaining public benefits is in and of itself a stressful time consuming task.. But, we are all used to it. The UBI doesn’t have the strings attached and we desperately need this resource. The UBI is a necessity not a want!
Please I am asking that you maintain your commitment to this, and consider the ways in which you can transform many lives including our economy. We would be able to pay for transportation costs, child care, clothing, and possibly be able to buy a 30-day bus pass to help us keep our jobs, or for many, find a job!
Basic necessities that many people take for granted could now be available to us, the single parents.
Thank you for your consideration.