By Alana Bleimann
SAN FRANCISCO, CA – Senate Bill 739, designed to financially support youth across California’s foster care systems, has received co-sponsorship of San Francisco District Attorney Chesa Boudin.
SB 739, or the Universal Basic Income (UBI) for Transition Age Foster Youth Act, was introduced by Senator Dave Cortese (D-15) earlier this year.
If this bill were to become law, California would be the first state in the nation to provide UBI to former foster youth.
Boudin has a personal relationship with the co-sponsorship because from the age of 14 months he grew up without either of his parents, who were incarcerated with extremely high sentences.
Youth, like Boudin, who was lucky enough to find adoptive parents, or who are funneled through the foster care system, are often unable to find stable employment, housing, and education.
This oftentimes leads to homelessness, and “transitional age youth without familial support far too often end up victimized or arrested and incarcerated for committing crimes to support themselves”, according to DA Boudin.
SB 739 offers a temporary solution to this issue affecting thousands of young adults across the country.
Boudin stated that this financial support “promotes public safety” and closes “that gap for those who age out of foster care to ensure they get the support they need.”
Additionally, Sen. Cortese stated that UBI “can serve to provide stability to a vulnerable population and increase the likelihood that they succeed in their education, employment, and physical and mental health.”
Boudin and Cortese said they are “proud to co-sponsor this important legislation” and hope to see it manifest into law in the near future.
Alana Bleimann is a junior at the University of San Francisco majoring in Sociology with a minor in Criminal Justice Studies. She is from Raleigh, North Carolina. She is the team leader on the Chesa Boudin Recall – Changing the Narrative Project.
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