Alabama city joins program offering monthly payments to single moms

Published 5:43 am Monday, October 25, 2021

Birmingham is planning a pilot program to offer a guaranteed income to 110 single mothers in the city, where single women head about 60% of all households with children.

Proposed by Mayor Randall Woodfin, the Embrace Mothers plan was approved unanimously by the City Council on Tuesday.

As many as 110 single mothers who apply will receive monthly payments of $375 for a year through the program, according to a statement from the city. The program is funded mainly by $500,000 in grants from Mayors for a Guaranteed Income, a California-based nonprofit group, and the city will provide as much as $40,000 for administration and $10,000 for counseling for participants.

Birmingham, with a population of about 212,000, is the first city in Alabama to join the program, the mayor said. The money will be delivered is meant to supplement, not replace, assistance from other programs.

“Women and mothers specifically are the nucleus of our families and communities. By putting financial resources into homes, we not only improve the outcomes for women but for children and the greater community at large,” Woodfin said.

A private group, not the city, will run the application process and select recipients of the money, the city said, and a control group of households not receiving money will be formed for research purposes.

More than two dozen cities nationwide are planning pilot programs through the organization, according to its website.