When can I apply for $500 monthly Chicago cash assistance program?

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Chicago residents can start applying Monday for Chicago’s $500 Monthly Cash Assistance Program (also known as Universal Basic Income).

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The city will hold a lottery to select 5,000 people from eligible applicants.

Applications can be submitted beginning April 25 at To be eligible, applicants must: live in Chicago; be at least 18 years old; have experienced economic hardship related to COVID-19; and have a family income at or below 250% of the federal poverty level. That’s $55,575 for a family of four.

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When announcing the program, Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot said 18 percent of Chicagoans live below the poverty line.

“More than 200,000 Chicagoans live in extreme poverty. That means their income is less than $6,795 a year – or $13,875 a year for a family of four. Those are devastating numbers. for a while, and trying to keep a family of four fed, clothed, safe and healthy on about $13,800 a year. That’s next to impossible,” she said.

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Money for cash assistance comes from federal pandemic funds.

People can use the money for whatever they want.


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