Tuomas Muraja’s life took an unexpected turn at the end of 2016. He received a letter telling him that he would be getting a monthly sum of $640 from the Finnish government, no strings attached, for two years. “It was actually like winning the lottery,” Tuomas Muraja said, who was one of 2,000 people randomly selected from a pool of 175,000 unemployed Finns, aged 25 to 58, to take part in one of the most prominent universal basic income trials in the world. Since losing his staff job as a journalist in 2013, Muraja has struggled to find permanent work. Every month he was trying to scramble together money for his rent of about $2,270 from freelance writing gigs, which came sporadically and often paid late. The government’s basic income scheme gave him freedom.Published in Daily Times, February 18th 2019.