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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: Pindus, Nancy; Koralek, Robin; Martinson, Karin; Trutko, John
    Reference Type: Report
    Year: 2000

    The policy context for both welfare programs and employment and training programs operated by the workforce development system has changed dramatically in the past few years.  The Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act (PRWORA) of 1996 requires welfare agencies to focus more than in the past on moving welfare recipients into employment.  PRWORA provides funding to welfare agencies in the form of a block grant, Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF), to support efforts to achieve this objective.  The need to move more TANF clients into work activities and jobs means that TANF agencies need to expand or develop structural and organizational arrangements that make this possible, including coordinating with the workforce development system.

    The Welfare-to-Work (WtW) Grants Program provides additional funding to serve welfare recipients, but the resources flow through the employment and training system, now commonly called the workforce development system.  WtW creates new incentives for the workforce development system to coordinate with the...

    The policy context for both welfare programs and employment and training programs operated by the workforce development system has changed dramatically in the past few years.  The Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act (PRWORA) of 1996 requires welfare agencies to focus more than in the past on moving welfare recipients into employment.  PRWORA provides funding to welfare agencies in the form of a block grant, Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF), to support efforts to achieve this objective.  The need to move more TANF clients into work activities and jobs means that TANF agencies need to expand or develop structural and organizational arrangements that make this possible, including coordinating with the workforce development system.

    The Welfare-to-Work (WtW) Grants Program provides additional funding to serve welfare recipients, but the resources flow through the employment and training system, now commonly called the workforce development system.  WtW creates new incentives for the workforce development system to coordinate with the welfare system on behalf of welfare recipients.  The workforce development system is also changing, moving towards universal access to employment related services and the use of technology to serve job seekers and employers better.

    States and localities are responding to this dynamic environment in different ways, and their responses reflect historical relationships as well as current policy objectives.  This study builds on earlier research in the area of service coordination and integration, and provides a current description of local operational interaction between welfare and workforce development programs.  It is based on a review of the literature and site visits to twelve localities in six states.  The main intent is to add to the understanding about how welfare recipients receive employment-related services.  The study identifies different approaches to coordination, the advantages of coordination for clients, and factors that promote and impede coordination. (author abstract)

  • Individual Author: Gibbs, Deborah; Kasten, Jennifer; Bir, Anupa; Hoover, Sonja; Duncan, Dean; Mitchell, Janet
    Reference Type: Report
    Year: 2004

    Since the establishment of the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) program, much attention has been given to reductions in the number of welfare cases. Welfare cases declined nationally by 52 percent between 1996 and 2001; however, child-only cases declined by much less. Thus, while the number of child-only cases has fluctuated over time, their proportionate share of the TANF caseload has increased. Children in TANF child-only cases with relative caregivers occupy uncertain territory between the TANF and the child welfare service systems. Since these children are exempt from work requirements and not expected to move to self-sufficiency prior to adulthood, they are not well aligned with the TANF agency’s expectations and service offerings. Because they have not been identified as having experienced maltreatment, they are outside the child welfare system’s protective mandate, although they may be in need of supportive services. (author abstract)

    Since the establishment of the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) program, much attention has been given to reductions in the number of welfare cases. Welfare cases declined nationally by 52 percent between 1996 and 2001; however, child-only cases declined by much less. Thus, while the number of child-only cases has fluctuated over time, their proportionate share of the TANF caseload has increased. Children in TANF child-only cases with relative caregivers occupy uncertain territory between the TANF and the child welfare service systems. Since these children are exempt from work requirements and not expected to move to self-sufficiency prior to adulthood, they are not well aligned with the TANF agency’s expectations and service offerings. Because they have not been identified as having experienced maltreatment, they are outside the child welfare system’s protective mandate, although they may be in need of supportive services. (author abstract)

  • Individual Author: Brocksen, Sally M.
    Reference Type: Thesis
    Year: 2006

    This project employed a descriptive case study methodology guided by rational choice theory to examine the financial feasibility of marriage for low income women. By modeling the income and expenses of eight different low income family types in six states (Arizona, California, New York, Oklahoma, Virginia, and Wisconsin) this study illustrates the financial situation of various low income families. The family types under investigation include: a single parent family, a family receiving TANF, cohabiting couple with two wage earners, cohabiting couple with one wage earner, a married family with two wage earners, a married couple with one wage earner, a unmarried couple with an infant (unmarried fragile family), and a married couple with an infant (married fragile family). The income of each family type was calculated at two different wage levels (minimum and low wage for each state under investigation). Income included the welfare benefits and subsidies each of the family's is likely to receive (including child care subsidies and tax credits). The expenses of each family were...

    This project employed a descriptive case study methodology guided by rational choice theory to examine the financial feasibility of marriage for low income women. By modeling the income and expenses of eight different low income family types in six states (Arizona, California, New York, Oklahoma, Virginia, and Wisconsin) this study illustrates the financial situation of various low income families. The family types under investigation include: a single parent family, a family receiving TANF, cohabiting couple with two wage earners, cohabiting couple with one wage earner, a married family with two wage earners, a married couple with one wage earner, a unmarried couple with an infant (unmarried fragile family), and a married couple with an infant (married fragile family). The income of each family type was calculated at two different wage levels (minimum and low wage for each state under investigation). Income included the welfare benefits and subsidies each of the family's is likely to receive (including child care subsidies and tax credits). The expenses of each family were calculated based on the size of the family and the cost of expenses such as housing and food expenditures. This study found that of the models presented here married families are not always financially better off when compared to single parent and cohabiting families. These findings demonstrate that if policy makers wish to support marriage among low income families they should first make marriage financially feasible for unmarried couples (particularly cohabiting couples) and create greater economic stability for couples that are already married. By providing consistent work supports (e.g. child care and health insurance), expanding programs that help low income families (such as the Earned Income Tax Credit), creating poverty measures that accurately reflect the real situation of low income families, and increasing the wages of low income workers, policy makers will create an environment where it is financially feasible for low income couples to marry and remain married. (author abstract)

  • Individual Author: Collard, Carol S.
    Reference Type: Journal Article
    Year: 2007

    Securing adequate housing is a key component in achieving family well-being and a decent quality of life. It is expected that as many as twenty percent of the families currently on welfare, many of whom are disproportionately female and African American, may not be employable by the end of their lifetime benefit. These families, classified as “hard-to-serve” or “hard-to-employ,” are headed by an adult who may be struggling with substance abuse, physical or mental health problems, as well as low literacy and social competency issues that inhibit achieving self-sufficiency. This author will examine existing literature on welfare-dependent households coping with substance abuse and mental health problems, and how the lack of affordable housing impacts their ability to achieve self-sufficiency. This article presents a case study of Delowe Village Apartments, a supportive housing development in Georgia that combines the provision of social services with affordable housing. (author abstract)

    Securing adequate housing is a key component in achieving family well-being and a decent quality of life. It is expected that as many as twenty percent of the families currently on welfare, many of whom are disproportionately female and African American, may not be employable by the end of their lifetime benefit. These families, classified as “hard-to-serve” or “hard-to-employ,” are headed by an adult who may be struggling with substance abuse, physical or mental health problems, as well as low literacy and social competency issues that inhibit achieving self-sufficiency. This author will examine existing literature on welfare-dependent households coping with substance abuse and mental health problems, and how the lack of affordable housing impacts their ability to achieve self-sufficiency. This article presents a case study of Delowe Village Apartments, a supportive housing development in Georgia that combines the provision of social services with affordable housing. (author abstract)

  • Individual Author: Williams Shanks, Trina R.; Boddie, Stephanie C.; Rice, Solana
    Reference Type: Journal Article
    Year: 2010

    This research examines individual development account (IDA) programs as part of a broader community development strategy for low-income/low-wealth communities, particularly communities of color. Through a review of multiple literatures and detailed case studies, we explore the potential of explicitly creating a community-based, family-centered development account program as a step toward a comprehensive community asset building approach in low-income urban neighborhoods. From the perspective of IDA practitioners, such an approach provides program participants with local support networks and access to additional services. From the perspective of grassroots community organizers, such an approach provides tangible benefits to low-income residents of their neighborhoods. The likelihood of success may depend on the availability of local resources to build areas of strength and reduce vulnerabilities, but there are examples where a family-centered, community-based asset building approach seems to thrive. (Author abstract)

    This research examines individual development account (IDA) programs as part of a broader community development strategy for low-income/low-wealth communities, particularly communities of color. Through a review of multiple literatures and detailed case studies, we explore the potential of explicitly creating a community-based, family-centered development account program as a step toward a comprehensive community asset building approach in low-income urban neighborhoods. From the perspective of IDA practitioners, such an approach provides program participants with local support networks and access to additional services. From the perspective of grassroots community organizers, such an approach provides tangible benefits to low-income residents of their neighborhoods. The likelihood of success may depend on the availability of local resources to build areas of strength and reduce vulnerabilities, but there are examples where a family-centered, community-based asset building approach seems to thrive. (Author abstract)

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