Welfare Reform/TANF Archive

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  • Recent Report on TANF’s Responsiveness to the Recession Has Serious Flaws
    LaDonna Pavetti, Ph.D.
    September 10, 2014

    A recent study on how the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) program responded to increased need during the Great Recession, by Ron Haskins and Kimberly Howard of the Brookings Institution and Vicky Albert of the University of Nevada, asserts that “TANF was more responsive to the recession than critics have …
  • Commentary: The Ryan “Opportunity Grant” Proposal — A Reply to Scott Winship
    Robert Greenstein
    September 9, 2014

    In a recent commentary, I raised serious concerns about the centerpiece of House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan’s new poverty plan — his sweeping proposal to merge 11 programs ranging from SNAP (food stamps) to the Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) into a single block grant.[1]  The Manhattan …
  • Chart Book: TANF at 18
    Revised August 22, 2014

    Eighteen years ago, the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) block grant was created as a part of the 1996 welfare reform law to replace the Aid to Families with Dependent Children (AFDC) program.  Welfare reform provided states with a fixed block grant in exchange for greater flexibility in how they could use the funds.  In addition, for the first time, cash …
  • Commentary: Ryan “Opportunity Grant” Proposal Would Likely Increase Poverty and Shrink Resources for Poverty Programs Over Time
    Robert Greenstein
    July 24, 2014

    A centerpiece of House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan’s new poverty plan would consolidate 11 safety-net and related programs — from food stamps to housing vouchers, child care, and the Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) — into a single block grant to states.  This new …
  • Deep Poverty Among Children Worsened in Welfare Law’s First Decade
    Arloc Sherman and Danilo Trisi
    July 23, 2014

    Since the mid-1990s, when policymakers made major changes in the public assistance system, the proportion of children living in poverty has declined, but the harshest extremes of child poverty have increased.  After correcting for the well-known underreporting of safety net benefits in the Census data, we estimate that the …
  • Online Services for Key Low-Income Benefit Programs
    Revised May 6, 2014

    Virtually all states have made basic program information on the five main state-administered low-income benefit programs — SNAP (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, formerly known as Food Stamps), Medicaid, CHIP (Children’s Health Insurance Program), TANF (Temporary Assistance for Needy Families), and child care …
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