San Francisco’s guaranteed income program for pregnant Black and Pacific Islander women has now been expanded statewide

By: Margaret Hetherwick

San Francisco’s Abundant Births Project, a basic income program for Black and Pacific Islander families to assist with healthcare during pregnancy, has just been expanded statewide.

Expectant Black and Pacific Islander families in San Francisco, Alameda, Contra Costa, Los Angeles and Riverside counties will now have access to a monthly stipend of up to $1,000 for 12 months. The project has been awarded $5 million in state funding and will be able to serve almost 600 clients around the state.

The project in San Francisco is managed by the Department of Public Health and Expecting Justice, a nonprofit dedicated to pregnancy health equity.

“For so long, Black women have been excluded from the resources we need to have safe and healthy pregnancies. This funding will provide pregnant people with economic stability during this critical phase in their lives while allowing public health institutions to test a novel and promising public health intervention,” said Dr. Zea Malawa, director of Expecting Justice.

When it began in 2020, the program was the first of its kind in the nation. In San Francisco, Black and Pacific Islander pregnancies were twice as likely to have pregnancy complications.

Dr. Grant Colfax, San Francisco director of health, said the program will have an impact. 

“We are so proud and excited to see a San Francisco program grow to help hundreds of more Black birthing parents in California and give infants the best chance for a healthy start in life.”  

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