Skip to main content

The Big Bet: Investing in People to End Poverty

This event is part of “Equity in Action: A Conversation Series,” a dynamic lineup of public events exploring the interlocking issues that define and shape our racial and economic realities.

Register Today

Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. advocated for a universal basic income to achieve economic justice. Today, programs across the nation, including the Stockton Economic Empowerment Demonstration and the Family Independence Initiative, have been experimenting with offering city residents “no-strings attached” payments, also known as direct cash transfers, to combat poverty and growing income inequality.

The idea has increasingly gained support in Chicago, where a group of elected officials and civic leaders—the Chicago Resilient Families Task Force—recently put forth an action plan to implement a pilot program locally. The task force also recommended a City Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC), another way to strengthen families. A City EITC for working households is a key recommendation in MPC’s Our Equitable Future roadmap.

Join MPC and Economic Security for Illinois for a conversation with former Chicago Alderman Ameya Pawar, Chicago Site Director for the Family Independence Initiative Ebony Scott, and Strategic Director of Jain Family Institute (JFI) Guaranteed Income Initiative Lauren Burns-Coady. They’ll delve into the opportunities and challenges of cash transfer programs, as well as how Chicago might apply lessons from other cities to tackle poverty, violence, and racial disparity.

Doors open at 5 p.m. The program will begin at 5:30 p.m., with time to mingle before and after. The cost of the event is $15 for members of the general public and $12 for MPC Donors. Admission includes snacks, soft drinks, wine and beer.

Space is limited, so please register in advance. If you have any additional questions or need special accommodations, please contact us at

“Equity in Action” Conversation Series

Aided by more than 100 advisors, the Metropolitan Planning Council, in May 2018, released a roadmap for a more racially equitable Chicago region. As we continue working closely with partners to implement the two dozen recommendations in the roadmap, we reflect on one of our biggest learnings from this journey: the value of creating and elevating public dialogue on the interlocking issues that define and shape our racial and economic realities. MPC and partners present Equity in Action: A Conversation Seriesa dynamic lineup of public events to celebrate progress, examine issues, and hold ourselves accountable for advancing the change that’s needed. For more information, click here.

Event Partner

About Economic Security for Illinois

Economic Security for Illinois seeks to build interest in cash transfer polices, with a focus on modernizing and expanding (EITC) in Illinois and Chicago and implementing a guaranteed income pilot in Chicago.


Sponsorship opportunities for this conversation series and specific event are available! 

For more information, contact: 
Janet Myers 
Vice President of Philanthropy