A NEW cross-party group has been launched at Holyrood to take an in-depth look at the the concept of basic income.

It will examine the options for a basic income as a policy for reform of the social security system in Scotland, including considering its potential sources of funding.

Members will discuss the merits and drawbacks of different models and other effects and impacts they might have on society and the economy.

The joint conveners of the group are SNP MSP Ivan McKee and Labour’s Alex Rowley.

McKee said: “Scotland is facing transformative technological changes with increased automation, so we need to be ready for the economic and social effects.

“As well as providing financial security to people transitioning to new forms of work, basic income opens up opportunities to support entrepreneurship and creative activities.”

Rowley added: “Basic income is potentially a key instrument in creating a fairer Scotland.”

Maddy Halliday, a trustee of Citizens’ Basic Income Network Scotland, said: “ The creation of the CPG ensures that discussion and review of the proposed basic income pilots, and the wider development of related work in Scotland, will take place at the very heart of our democratic decision-making.”