The contemporary tendency in our society is to base our distribution on scarcity, which has vanished, and to compress our abundance into the overfed mouths of the middle and upper classes until they gag with superfluity. If democracy is to have breadth of meaning, it is necessary to adjust this inequity.
– Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
What does wealth redistribution mean?
Before we talk about redistributing wealth, let's get a clearer understanding of what wealth and resources are that were gifted to us by our ancestors. Some people think wealth is just money but it's so much more than that. It includes currency, time, energy, skills, and ultimately anything that can provide well being for yourself and your community.
To redistribute wealth is to distribute money and resources in a way that everyone has what they need. At Narratives Unbound, we believe in passing on the tools for overcoming money trauma and building wealth so you, your neighbors, friends and family can deploy resources for yourselves and your communities.
Save. Invest. Redistribute the rest.
It's easy to feel that issues like poverty and the racial wealth gap are so big that one person can't do much about them. But everyone one of us can save, invest, and redistribute our income and other resources. Everyone of us can make a difference.
Wealth redistribution is the act of reciprocity and teaches individuals and communities how to save, invest and manage their resources in a way that not only eliminates poverty but generates wealth for the next 7 generations.
How do we do this?
Once we have a general understanding of what wealth redistribution is, we have to challenge our dysfunctional beliefs around wealth and address our financial trauma for this paradigm shift to be sustainable. Below is a chart that demonstrates how real people in our communities have been able to shift their mindset as it relates to wealth.
Credit to Tierica Berry for developing this chart
Where did the idea of wealth distribution come from?
The idea of wealth redistribution is not new... our ancestors in community and governments have implemented forms of redistribution for thousands of years.
Progressive tax structures, the use of cash transfers, and the implementation of minimum wage laws are just some of the ways those in leadership have attempted to equalize income levels and lessen the impacts of poverty.
Carrying the fight further in the 21st century, some leaders are trying a Universal Basic Income (UBI) for the first time. Business Insider reported on 33 programs offering a guaranteed income for specific groups meeting specific criteria. Here are some examples:
Compton Pledge in Compton, California - 800 participants receives $1800 every three months for two years.
Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians Casino Dividend - All tribal members receive $4000-$6000 annually.
Project Resilience in Ulster County, NY - 100 participants receive $5000 each month for one year.
As you can see, the amount varies from program to program, but the basic idea holds - give each participant a set amount of money for a specific time frame. Guaranteed. No strings attached. No rules on how to spend it.
Another similar tool is conditional cash transfer (CCT), an anti-poverty approach to organization that has been in use since the 1990s.
"Conditional cash transfer programs (CCTs) have been proven to play a role in reducing poverty by redistributing resources to the poor, but can also foster greater economic autonomy and self-sufficiency" - ODI: Think Change
At Narratives Unbound, we support programs like UBI and CCTs, and we're also teaching our clients to make a personal commitment to erasing racial inequity and taking care of our communities.
We're teaching our clients to:
Keep working to learn about building reserves and the importance of a growth mindset.
Keep learning about money as a tool to use for building ones self, family and community.
Keep sharing generously with those in need by redistributing your personal resources.
With personal commitment from people like you who care about erasing racial inequity and taking care of our communities, we can change the world on wealth building step at a time.
Support our Work
Your generous contributions will support the success of our Wealth Redistribution work. Please contact us if you have any questions or would like more information.