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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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The SSRC Library includes resources which may be available only via journal subscription. The SSRC may be able to provide users without subscription access to a particular journal with a single use copy of the full text.  Please email the SSRC with your request.

The SSRC Library collection is constantly growing and new research is added regularly. We welcome our users to submit a library item to help us grow our collection in response to your needs.


  • Individual Author: Culhane, Dennis P.; Koblinsky, Sally A.; Wilson, Cynthia P.; Weinreb, Jenni
    Reference Type: Conference Paper
    Year: 1996

    While certain issues affect all homeless people, several are of particular relevance to homeless families. From the myriad of pressing issues surrounding the problem of homelessness, this report focuses on the following four points:

    1. In terms of the causes of homelessness, most families do not find themselves homeless as the result of a single financial mistake or stroke of bad luck; rather it is common for families to become homeless after a series of changes in their lives. These are likely to involve a combination of factors ranging from economic hardship due to a layoff or lack of training to a mental health issue or recurring substance abuse habit.
    2. The effects of homelessness, like the causes, are not isolated and specific. Furthermore, the problems that lead a family to homelessness often multiply and worsen for a period of time before the individuals and the family as a whole are able to alleviate them and regain self-sufficiency.
    3. To recover from homelessness and achieve self-sufficiency, housing assistance alone is not enough for most families...

    While certain issues affect all homeless people, several are of particular relevance to homeless families. From the myriad of pressing issues surrounding the problem of homelessness, this report focuses on the following four points:

    1. In terms of the causes of homelessness, most families do not find themselves homeless as the result of a single financial mistake or stroke of bad luck; rather it is common for families to become homeless after a series of changes in their lives. These are likely to involve a combination of factors ranging from economic hardship due to a layoff or lack of training to a mental health issue or recurring substance abuse habit.
    2. The effects of homelessness, like the causes, are not isolated and specific. Furthermore, the problems that lead a family to homelessness often multiply and worsen for a period of time before the individuals and the family as a whole are able to alleviate them and regain self-sufficiency.
    3. To recover from homelessness and achieve self-sufficiency, housing assistance alone is not enough for most families. Most require assistance and opportunities in areas at least as comprehensive as the issues that caused their homelessness in the first place. Areas of need include financial planning, substance abuse counseling, further education, parenting classes, mental health counseling, and treatment for chronic illnesses (including HIV/AIDS), among a host of others.
    4. For homeless families to improve their circumstances, their children must be able to remain in school and receive services necessary to address the developmental challenges that are likely to arise as a result of their homelessness. Without addressing the specific needs of homeless children, particularly those needs related to their homelessness, the long-term prospects for a family’s well-being may be greatly compromised. (author introduction)
  • Individual Author: Sorensen, Elaine; Turner, Mark
    Reference Type: Report
    Year: 1996

    This review examines ways in which institutions and agencies act as barriers to paternal involvement, particularly for unmarried fathers and fathers of color. These fathers are frequently portrayed as unwilling, uninterested parents who must be forced by the government to take responsibility for their children, and this perspective lays the foundation for punitive policies and practices. The review begins by addressing research that has sought to determine the actual amount and kinds of support disadvantaged fathers provide for their children. The next sections describe how specific policies actually deter young men's involvement with their families and suggest ways of making legislation and social service agencies more conducive to fathers. The review concludes with recommendations for policy and future research. Throughout the review, the argument is made that while policies and practices may not actively seek to discourage paternal participation in the family, negative assumptions that result in the dismissal of fathers as viable parents result in fathers' disengagement. (...

    This review examines ways in which institutions and agencies act as barriers to paternal involvement, particularly for unmarried fathers and fathers of color. These fathers are frequently portrayed as unwilling, uninterested parents who must be forced by the government to take responsibility for their children, and this perspective lays the foundation for punitive policies and practices. The review begins by addressing research that has sought to determine the actual amount and kinds of support disadvantaged fathers provide for their children. The next sections describe how specific policies actually deter young men's involvement with their families and suggest ways of making legislation and social service agencies more conducive to fathers. The review concludes with recommendations for policy and future research. Throughout the review, the argument is made that while policies and practices may not actively seek to discourage paternal participation in the family, negative assumptions that result in the dismissal of fathers as viable parents result in fathers' disengagement. (author abstract)

  • Individual Author: Wilson, William Julius
    Reference Type: Book Chapter/Book
    Year: 1997

    Wilson, one of our foremost authorities on race and poverty, challenges decades of liberal and conservative pieties to look squarely at the devastating effects that joblessness has had on our urban ghettos. Marshaling a vast array of data and the personal stories of hundreds of men and women, Wilson persuasively argues that problems endemic to America's inner cities--from fatherless households to drugs and violent crime--stem directly from the disappearance of blue-collar jobs in the wake of a globalized economy. Wilson's achievement is to portray this crisis as one that affects all Americans, and to propose solutions whose benefits would be felt across our society. At a time when welfare is ending and our country's racial dialectic is more strained than ever, When Work Disappears is a sane, courageous, and desperately important work. (publisher abstract)

    Wilson, one of our foremost authorities on race and poverty, challenges decades of liberal and conservative pieties to look squarely at the devastating effects that joblessness has had on our urban ghettos. Marshaling a vast array of data and the personal stories of hundreds of men and women, Wilson persuasively argues that problems endemic to America's inner cities--from fatherless households to drugs and violent crime--stem directly from the disappearance of blue-collar jobs in the wake of a globalized economy. Wilson's achievement is to portray this crisis as one that affects all Americans, and to propose solutions whose benefits would be felt across our society. At a time when welfare is ending and our country's racial dialectic is more strained than ever, When Work Disappears is a sane, courageous, and desperately important work. (publisher abstract)

  • Individual Author: Nightingale, Demetra Smith; Holcomb, Pamela A.
    Reference Type: Journal Article
    Year: 1997

    As states reform their welfare systems to emphasize work and self-sufficiency, they can draw on significant past experience with efforts to promote employment. Work and training programs for welfare recipients and other disadvantaged individuals have been operating in every state for nearly 30 years. This article summarizes findings from key evaluations of strategies to increase the employment and earnings of individuals. The article also reviews lessons about program design and management drawn from studies of program outcomes and implementation. Evaluations of net impact typically measure outcomes for randomly selected individuals who participated in programs, and compare those with outcomes for individuals who did not receive the treatment. Studies of program outcome and implementation analyze the effectiveness of entire programs in real-world operational settings. The evidence from net-impact evaluations shows that programs that encourage, help, or require welfare recipients to find jobs or participate in training or work-related activities can increase employment and...

    As states reform their welfare systems to emphasize work and self-sufficiency, they can draw on significant past experience with efforts to promote employment. Work and training programs for welfare recipients and other disadvantaged individuals have been operating in every state for nearly 30 years. This article summarizes findings from key evaluations of strategies to increase the employment and earnings of individuals. The article also reviews lessons about program design and management drawn from studies of program outcomes and implementation. Evaluations of net impact typically measure outcomes for randomly selected individuals who participated in programs, and compare those with outcomes for individuals who did not receive the treatment. Studies of program outcome and implementation analyze the effectiveness of entire programs in real-world operational settings. The evidence from net-impact evaluations shows that programs that encourage, help, or require welfare recipients to find jobs or participate in training or work-related activities can increase employment and earnings and in some cases reduce welfare costs. Even the most successful programs, however, yield only small gains in earnings that do not move most former welfare recipients out of poverty. The article also discusses critical policy and implementation issues that influence the effectiveness of welfare-to-work programs overall. It focuses on strategies for increasing rates of participation in the programs, for improving implementation, and for strengthening links with the local labor market, which ultimately determines the success or failure of any welfare-to-work program. (author abstract)

  • Individual Author: Hershey, Alan M.; Pavetti, LaDonna A.
    Reference Type: Journal Article
    Year: 1997

    Most welfare-to-work programs designed to help single mothers leave welfare for employment focus on the challenge of finding a job. This article looks beyond the point of employment to consider the difficulty many former welfare recipients have keeping their jobs. The authors review evidence showing that many families cycle back and forth between welfare and work, losing jobs and returning to public assistance while they seek work again. Factors contributing to high rates of job loss include characteristics of the job and of the worker: Temporary jobs, frequent layoffs, low pay in relation to work expenses, lack of experience meeting employer expectations, and personal or family problems all lead to dismissals and resignations. Drawing from the experience of innovative programs, the authors recommend policy changes and program approaches that can help families overcome setbacks and stabilize their lives as they move from welfare into increasingly stable employment. (author abstract)

    Most welfare-to-work programs designed to help single mothers leave welfare for employment focus on the challenge of finding a job. This article looks beyond the point of employment to consider the difficulty many former welfare recipients have keeping their jobs. The authors review evidence showing that many families cycle back and forth between welfare and work, losing jobs and returning to public assistance while they seek work again. Factors contributing to high rates of job loss include characteristics of the job and of the worker: Temporary jobs, frequent layoffs, low pay in relation to work expenses, lack of experience meeting employer expectations, and personal or family problems all lead to dismissals and resignations. Drawing from the experience of innovative programs, the authors recommend policy changes and program approaches that can help families overcome setbacks and stabilize their lives as they move from welfare into increasingly stable employment. (author abstract)

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