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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: Reeves, Richard V.; Krause, Eleanor
    Reference Type: Report
    Year: 2019

    We argue in Part 1 of this paper that maternal depression is an under-acknowledged factor in the intergenerational transmission of poverty, and lack of economic mobility. Specifically, we show that:

    I. Poverty increases the risk of maternal depression;

    II. Maternal depression can weaken attachment;

    III. Weaker attachment can impair child development;

    IV. Slower development can damage child outcomes; and

    V. Worse child outcomes can increase the risk of future poverty.

    Since our focus here is on the role of the mental health of caregivers in the very early years, we spend more time on these particular links in the chain. The other links—for instance, between child and adult outcomes—are treated only briefly, with pointers to the broader literature. In Part 2 we draw out some policy approaches to breaking the cycle at each point. This is an area where a “two-generation” approach may pay dividends. Specifically, we suggest policies to:

    I. Reduce poverty;

    II. Reduce the impact of poverty on depression among caregivers;

    III...

    We argue in Part 1 of this paper that maternal depression is an under-acknowledged factor in the intergenerational transmission of poverty, and lack of economic mobility. Specifically, we show that:

    I. Poverty increases the risk of maternal depression;

    II. Maternal depression can weaken attachment;

    III. Weaker attachment can impair child development;

    IV. Slower development can damage child outcomes; and

    V. Worse child outcomes can increase the risk of future poverty.

    Since our focus here is on the role of the mental health of caregivers in the very early years, we spend more time on these particular links in the chain. The other links—for instance, between child and adult outcomes—are treated only briefly, with pointers to the broader literature. In Part 2 we draw out some policy approaches to breaking the cycle at each point. This is an area where a “two-generation” approach may pay dividends. Specifically, we suggest policies to:

    I. Reduce poverty;

    II. Reduce the impact of poverty on depression among caregivers;

    III. Reduce the impact of caregiver depression on early child development; and

    IV. Reduce the impact of weaker early child development on later outcomes.

    (Edited author introduction)

  • Individual Author: Rothwell, David W. ; Ottusch, Timothy ; Finders, Jennifer K.
    Reference Type: Journal Article
    Year: 2019

    Children who grow up in income poverty experience increased risks for lifelong hardship. These hardships include low birth weight, increased infant mortality, emotional and behavioral problems, delayed cognitive development, lower academic achievement, and high school dropout, to name a few. The effects of income poverty are intergenerational, such that children in poverty are substantially more likely to be poor as adults. A recent review summarizing the past 50 years of research on this subject, highlights toxic stress and compromised immunity as the most conclusive mechanisms by which low income shapes later outcomes. The consequences of income poverty justify why more research is needed on the nature and extent of childhood poverty and interventions to reduce it. Within the existing literature, the vast majority of child poverty research uses household income as the sole indicator of well-being. Yet, families rely on a range of economic resources beyond income to meet basic needs and support children's development. Reeves and colleagues have recognized that poverty and...

    Children who grow up in income poverty experience increased risks for lifelong hardship. These hardships include low birth weight, increased infant mortality, emotional and behavioral problems, delayed cognitive development, lower academic achievement, and high school dropout, to name a few. The effects of income poverty are intergenerational, such that children in poverty are substantially more likely to be poor as adults. A recent review summarizing the past 50 years of research on this subject, highlights toxic stress and compromised immunity as the most conclusive mechanisms by which low income shapes later outcomes. The consequences of income poverty justify why more research is needed on the nature and extent of childhood poverty and interventions to reduce it. Within the existing literature, the vast majority of child poverty research uses household income as the sole indicator of well-being. Yet, families rely on a range of economic resources beyond income to meet basic needs and support children's development. Reeves and colleagues have recognized that poverty and disadvantage are complex and should be measured with multiple dimensions. Specifically, assets—financial and non-financial—shape family functioning and children's development in ways that are unique and independent from income. We begin by defining assets to include financial capital such as savings and stocks, along with non-financial assets such as real estate holdings, vehicles, etc. We then focus on financial assets as especially important to household finances because they can be easily liquidated to smooth consumption during times of economic hardship. (Author abstract)

  • Individual Author: Labella, Madelyn H.; McCormick, Christopher M.; Narayan, Angela J.; Desjardins, Christopher D. ; Masten, Ann S.
    Reference Type: Journal Article
    Year: 2019

    A multimethod, multi-informant design was used to examine links among sociodemographic risk, family adversity, parenting quality, and child adjustment in families experiencing homelessness. Participants were 245 homeless parents (Mage = 31.0, 63.6% African American) and their 4- to 6-year-old children (48.6% male). Path analyses revealed unique associations by risk domain: Higher sociodemographic risk predicted more externalizing behavior and poorer teacher–child relationships, whereas higher family adversity predicted more internalizing behavior. Parenting quality was positively associated with peer acceptance and buffered effects of family adversity on internalizing symptoms, consistent with a protective effect. Parenting quality was associated with lower externalizing behavior only when sociodemographic risk was below the sample mean. Implications for research and practice are discussed. (author abstract)

    A multimethod, multi-informant design was used to examine links among sociodemographic risk, family adversity, parenting quality, and child adjustment in families experiencing homelessness. Participants were 245 homeless parents (Mage = 31.0, 63.6% African American) and their 4- to 6-year-old children (48.6% male). Path analyses revealed unique associations by risk domain: Higher sociodemographic risk predicted more externalizing behavior and poorer teacher–child relationships, whereas higher family adversity predicted more internalizing behavior. Parenting quality was positively associated with peer acceptance and buffered effects of family adversity on internalizing symptoms, consistent with a protective effect. Parenting quality was associated with lower externalizing behavior only when sociodemographic risk was below the sample mean. Implications for research and practice are discussed. (author abstract)

  • Individual Author: Howard, Lanikque; Vogel, Lisa Klein; Cancian, Maria; Noyes, Jennifer L.
    Reference Type: Journal Article
    Year: 2019

    We analyze the role of newly integrated data from the child support and child welfare systems in seeding a major policy change in Wisconsin. Parents are often ordered to pay child support to offset the costs of their children’s stay in foster care. Policy allows for consideration of the “best interests of the child.” Concerns that charging parents could delay or disrupt reunification motivated our analyses of integrated data to identify the impacts of current policy. We summarize the results of the analyses and then focus on the role of administrative data in supporting policy development. We discuss the potential and limitations of integrated data in supporting cross-system innovation and detail a series of complementary research efforts designed to support implementation. (Author abstract)

    We analyze the role of newly integrated data from the child support and child welfare systems in seeding a major policy change in Wisconsin. Parents are often ordered to pay child support to offset the costs of their children’s stay in foster care. Policy allows for consideration of the “best interests of the child.” Concerns that charging parents could delay or disrupt reunification motivated our analyses of integrated data to identify the impacts of current policy. We summarize the results of the analyses and then focus on the role of administrative data in supporting policy development. We discuss the potential and limitations of integrated data in supporting cross-system innovation and detail a series of complementary research efforts designed to support implementation. (Author abstract)

  • Individual Author: Prager, Karen J.; Poucher, Jesse; Shirvani, Forouz K.; Parsons, Julie A.; Allam, Zoheb
    Reference Type: Journal Article
    Year: 2019

    This study used 115 cohabiting couple partners’ 21-day diaries, with which they reported each evening on their moods and their relationships, to test hypotheses about connections between withdrawal following conflict, attachment insecurity, and affective recovery from conflict (i.e., post-conflict relationship satisfaction, positive and negative mood, and intimacy). Individuals reported on their own and their partners’ post-conflict withdrawals. Results indicated that individuals who withdrew following conflicts, or whose partners withdrew, experienced worse post-conflict affective recoveries, particularly if they intended to punish their partners by withdrawing. Conversely, withdrawing from a punitive partner buffered the individual from some aftereffects of conflict. Support for our hypothesis that anxious attachment would exacerbate effects of withdrawing on recovery was unexpectedly weak. Conclusions address the negative and punishing impact of post-conflict withdrawing on couple partners’ affective recoveries and associations between anxious attachment and post-conflict...

    This study used 115 cohabiting couple partners’ 21-day diaries, with which they reported each evening on their moods and their relationships, to test hypotheses about connections between withdrawal following conflict, attachment insecurity, and affective recovery from conflict (i.e., post-conflict relationship satisfaction, positive and negative mood, and intimacy). Individuals reported on their own and their partners’ post-conflict withdrawals. Results indicated that individuals who withdrew following conflicts, or whose partners withdrew, experienced worse post-conflict affective recoveries, particularly if they intended to punish their partners by withdrawing. Conversely, withdrawing from a punitive partner buffered the individual from some aftereffects of conflict. Support for our hypothesis that anxious attachment would exacerbate effects of withdrawing on recovery was unexpectedly weak. Conclusions address the negative and punishing impact of post-conflict withdrawing on couple partners’ affective recoveries and associations between anxious attachment and post-conflict recovery. (Author abstract)

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