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The SSRC Library allows visitors to access materials related to self-sufficiency programs, practice and research. Visitors can view common search terms, conduct a keyword search or create a custom search using any combination of the filters at the left side of this page. To conduct a keyword search, type a term or combination of terms into the search box below, select whether you want to search the exact phrase or the words in any order, and click on the blue button to the right of the search box to view relevant results.

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  • Individual Author: O'Leary, Christopher J.
    Reference Type: Report
    Year: 2015

    In this paper I examine the rates at which adults in households recently receiving Temporary Assistance to Needy Families (TANF) become jobless, apply for and receive unemployment insurance (UI) benefits, and participate in publicly funded employment services. I also investigate the correlation of UI and employment services receipt with maintenance of self-sufficiency through return to work and independence from TANF. The analysis is based on person-level administrative program records from four of the nine largest states between 1997 and 2003. Evidence suggests that three-quarters of new TANF leavers experience joblessness within three years, and one-quarter of the newly jobless apply for UI benefits. About 87 percent of UI applicants have sufficient prior earnings to qualify for UI benefits; however, only about 44 percent qualify based on their job separation reasons. Among all UI applicants, TANF leavers were found to have much higher rates of voluntary quits and employer dismissals than non-TANF leavers. Nonetheless, 50 percent of TANF leavers who apply for UI ultimately...

    In this paper I examine the rates at which adults in households recently receiving Temporary Assistance to Needy Families (TANF) become jobless, apply for and receive unemployment insurance (UI) benefits, and participate in publicly funded employment services. I also investigate the correlation of UI and employment services receipt with maintenance of self-sufficiency through return to work and independence from TANF. The analysis is based on person-level administrative program records from four of the nine largest states between 1997 and 2003. Evidence suggests that three-quarters of new TANF leavers experience joblessness within three years, and one-quarter of the newly jobless apply for UI benefits. About 87 percent of UI applicants have sufficient prior earnings to qualify for UI benefits; however, only about 44 percent qualify based on their job separation reasons. Among all UI applicants, TANF leavers were found to have much higher rates of voluntary quits and employer dismissals than non-TANF leavers. Nonetheless, 50 percent of TANF leavers who apply for UI ultimately receive benefits. Public employment services are used by one-quarter of newly jobless TANF leavers. Among UI applicants, more than 75 percent use public employment services whether they receive UI benefits or not, while only 14 percent of newly jobless TANF leavers who do not apply for UI choose to use public employment services. Among TANF leavers who become jobless and apply for UI, the rate of return to TANF is lower for those who receive UI benefits. Rates of return to TANF are highest among nonbeneficiary UI applicants and non-UI applicants with low recent earnings. (Author abstract)

  • Individual Author: Georgia Department of Human Resources
    Reference Type: Report
    Year: 2003

    Georgia began implementation of Temporary Aid for Needy Families (TANF) on January 1, 1997. With TANF came more stringent work requirements for welfare recipients, a lifetime limit on receipt of welfare payments, and an end to the concept of entitlement. The Georgia Department of Human Resources (DHR) established the TANF Follow-Up System to track the employment, earnings, and recidivism of adults leaving TANF. This report summarizes the post-TANF outcomes of over 148,000 adults who left TANF during the period from 1997 through 2001. (author abstract)

    Georgia began implementation of Temporary Aid for Needy Families (TANF) on January 1, 1997. With TANF came more stringent work requirements for welfare recipients, a lifetime limit on receipt of welfare payments, and an end to the concept of entitlement. The Georgia Department of Human Resources (DHR) established the TANF Follow-Up System to track the employment, earnings, and recidivism of adults leaving TANF. This report summarizes the post-TANF outcomes of over 148,000 adults who left TANF during the period from 1997 through 2001. (author abstract)

  • Individual Author: Turnham, Jennifer; Cortes, Alvaro; Wood, Michelle; Berrien, Jenny
    Reference Type: Report
    Year: 2002

    In February and March 2002, Abt Associates completed qualitative, in-person interviews with 75 individuals who are part of the evaluation of the Welfare to Work Voucher (WtWV) program. These interviews provide the first in-depth look at the experiences of WtW voucher recipients and the kinds of housing and employment choices these families have made since voucher issuance. The WtWV program was authorized by Congress in fiscal year 1999 and implemented in 131 public housing agencies (PHAs) beginning in December 1999. The program offered tenant-based rental assistance vouchers to current and former recipients of Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) as well as families eligible for TANF. The purpose of the rental assistance is to help voucher recipients in their transition from welfare to economic self-sufficiency. (author introduction)

    In February and March 2002, Abt Associates completed qualitative, in-person interviews with 75 individuals who are part of the evaluation of the Welfare to Work Voucher (WtWV) program. These interviews provide the first in-depth look at the experiences of WtW voucher recipients and the kinds of housing and employment choices these families have made since voucher issuance. The WtWV program was authorized by Congress in fiscal year 1999 and implemented in 131 public housing agencies (PHAs) beginning in December 1999. The program offered tenant-based rental assistance vouchers to current and former recipients of Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) as well as families eligible for TANF. The purpose of the rental assistance is to help voucher recipients in their transition from welfare to economic self-sufficiency. (author introduction)

  • Individual Author: Acs, Gregory; Loprest, Pamela; Roberts, Tracy
    Reference Type: Report
    Year: 2001

    The Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act (PRWORA), passed in 1996, replaced the Aid to Families with Dependent Children (AFDC) program with the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) block grants to states. Since that time, the federal cash assistance caseloads have dropped by over 50 percent, from 4.4 million in August, 1996 to 2.1 million in March, 2001. There is interest at the federal, state, and local levels in better understanding the circumstances of the unprecedented number of families that have left welfare, including their employment status, participation in public programs, and the overall well-being of both the leavers and their children.

    A host of state and policy researchers have examined the well-being of families leaving welfare in the post-reform era. These studies vary widely in the populations they study, how they define a welfare “leaver,” the outcomes that they examine and how those outcomes are measured, and in their methodological rigor. Consequently, it is difficult to use these studies to draw general conclusions...

    The Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act (PRWORA), passed in 1996, replaced the Aid to Families with Dependent Children (AFDC) program with the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) block grants to states. Since that time, the federal cash assistance caseloads have dropped by over 50 percent, from 4.4 million in August, 1996 to 2.1 million in March, 2001. There is interest at the federal, state, and local levels in better understanding the circumstances of the unprecedented number of families that have left welfare, including their employment status, participation in public programs, and the overall well-being of both the leavers and their children.

    A host of state and policy researchers have examined the well-being of families leaving welfare in the post-reform era. These studies vary widely in the populations they study, how they define a welfare “leaver,” the outcomes that they examine and how those outcomes are measured, and in their methodological rigor. Consequently, it is difficult to use these studies to draw general conclusions about the status of TANF leavers nationwide.

    In an effort to address the above questions about the circumstances of welfare leavers and to facilitate cross-state comparisons, the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Planning and Evaluation (ASPE) of the United States the Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) awarded competitive grants to select states and large counties in September, 1998, to conduct studies of families that have left the welfare rolls. This report reviews and synthesizes key findings from fifteen of the ASPE-funded leavers studies.

    The studies, made possible by an earmarked Congressional appropriation to study the outcomes of welfare reform, include both administrative and survey data on the well-being of families who left welfare. This synthesis includes information on welfare leavers’ employment and earnings, public assistance program participation, income and poverty status, material hardships, and child well-being. In addition to publishing reports, grantees constructed public-use files containing state or county administrative data and/or survey data. Public use data from several of the sites are analyzed in this report to examine key outcomes for subgroups that may not have been included in the grantees’ published reports.

    Following the devolution of welfare programs to the state level, ASPE chose a research strategy that combined local flexibility in study design with some efforts to develop comparable measures across the studies in order to facilitate cross-study comparisons. There remain important differences in welfare policies, economic conditions, and the characteristics of leavers across the fifteen study areas that may affect leavers’ post-TANF experiences. However, despite these differences, some clear general patterns emerge. (author abstract)

  • Individual Author: Rickman, Dana K.; Bross, Nancy; Foster, E. Michael
    Reference Type: Journal Article
    Year: 2001

    The Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act of 1996 (PRWORA) embodies a work-first strategy for moving families off welfare and toward self-sufficiency. What had been an entitlement became a limited resource on which families could draw during an emergency. The expectation that parents should work to support their families is now communicated to recipients and supported through program requirements and a mix of incentives and sanctions.

    Under PRWORA, the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) caseloads in Georgia have plummeted. Between January 1997 and January 2000, the number of families receiving TANF in Georgia dropped by more than 63,000, representing nearly a 55 percent reduction in three years. By this narrow standard, welfare reform has been a success. However, a fuller assessment would reflect an understanding of the extent to which former recipients subsequently return to the rolls and are able to find and keep good jobs.

    To answer these questions, the state of Georgia funded two projects that combined the low cost and...

    The Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act of 1996 (PRWORA) embodies a work-first strategy for moving families off welfare and toward self-sufficiency. What had been an entitlement became a limited resource on which families could draw during an emergency. The expectation that parents should work to support their families is now communicated to recipients and supported through program requirements and a mix of incentives and sanctions.

    Under PRWORA, the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) caseloads in Georgia have plummeted. Between January 1997 and January 2000, the number of families receiving TANF in Georgia dropped by more than 63,000, representing nearly a 55 percent reduction in three years. By this narrow standard, welfare reform has been a success. However, a fuller assessment would reflect an understanding of the extent to which former recipients subsequently return to the rolls and are able to find and keep good jobs.

    To answer these questions, the state of Georgia funded two projects that combined the low cost and efficiency of population archival data with the greater depths of information offered by sample surveys. Using these data, this chapter examines recidivism and the factors that determine which leavers return to the rolls. It also explores the relationship between earnings and recidivism over time and how these relationships may evolve as families remain off the rolls. (author abstract)

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