DENVER – A program that gives unhoused Denverites up to $1,000 in cash payments each month, no-strings-attached, will be extended for another six months thanks to millions of dollars in additional funding, organizers said Tuesday.
The Denver Basic Income Project will continue giving direct cash payments to the 800 unhoused people who enrolled in the program when it first started in 2022 plus 39 others who were previously enrolled in earlier iterations of the project, according to a Tuesday news release.
The extension, which starts next month and goes through July, was made possible thanks to $2 million Denver City Council earmarked for the project from unspent federal coronavirus pandemic aid relief on top of $3 million provided by the Colorado Trust, a private foundation, report our partners at The Denver Post.
“The first year of the Denver Basic Income Project has shown that providing basic income to individuals and families experiencing homelessness creates accelerated pathways to safety, housing, wellness, work, stability, and thriving,” a project spokesperson said Tuesday.
Though results from the final study won’t be ready until June, a midpoint report released back in October showed encouraging results.
The report, prepared by the Center for Housing and Homelessness Research out of the University of Denver, found that 35% of those enrolled in the program were living in their own homes or apartments after six months of receiving direct cash payments, compared to only 8% at intake.
The study also showed rates of full-time employment increased over the course of those six months and that overall, enrollees slept outside less often when they were given cash payments.
Last year, the groups were broken into 3 subsections: Group A received $1,000 per month; Group B received $6,500 upfront and $500 per month for the following 11 months; and Group C – a control group – received $50 each month for 12 moths.
For the 2024 extension, the first two groups will receive $1,000 each month for the next 6 months, while the control group will receive $100 each of month, totaling $600 over the course of the six-month extension.