The more than 8,000 applications for the Embrace Mothers guaranteed income program have been categorized and notifications to the selected participants have begun. This randomized control trial was launched earlier in February by the City of Birmingham in partnership with Mayors for a Guaranteed Income (MGI), a network of mayors advocating to give Americans an income floor. Through this program, 110 Birmingham residents will receive $375 a month for a 12-month period via random drawing by a third party and with no strings attached.
“In a very real sense, the volume of response was encouraging. It demonstrates the strong desire of Birmingham’s single mothers to do all they can to support their families and seek out opportunities for greater economic stability,” said Birmingham Mayor Randall L. Woodfin. “At the same time, the response to the Embrace Mothers pilot caused me to pause and reflect on the magnitude of the challenges single mothers face — and on the critical need for the city, along with partners throughout the community, to provide this and other programs in support of single moms.”
Here is what applicants need to know:
- If selected, individuals will be reached via the phone number or email address submitted on their application. It is too late to change the contact information.
- Be sure to answer phone calls and email addresses regularly.
- Individuals who are not contacted do not need to call. As a reminder, the City of Birmingham does not have the list of the applicants and cannot check participation status. Please allow the third-party time to make all notifications. Once completed, the website will be updated at birminghamal.gov/embracemothers.
Applicants have been randomly assigned to one of three groups by Abt Associates, the City’s research partner on the pilot:
- Guaranteed income recipients: Mothers who will receive the monthly guaranteed income and are also eligible to participate in surveys every six months so that research facilitators can learn more about guaranteed income. These women will be compensated with a $30 gift card for each completed survey.
- Control group participants: Mothers who are randomly assigned into the control group will not receive a guaranteed income through the program. They will be invited to contribute to the research project by completing a voluntary survey every six months for the duration of the program and compensated with a $30 gift card for each completed survey.
- Non-participants: Applicants who are randomly assigned into this group will not receive a guaranteed income through the program and will not be invited to participate in any further research activities. Non-participants will not be contacted.
“What we are doing with Embrace Mothers is only a beginning, an initiative that should spark the question, in all corners of our city, What’s next?” Woodfin said. “We must continue to establish policies, enact programs, and build partnerships that enhance the dignity of individuals, help them optimize their value as members of the community, and create and perpetuate a climate for transformative economic, gender, and racial justice.”