off the charts
POLICY INSIGHT
BEYOND THE NUMBERS

You are here

Data Show TANF Didn’t Respond Adequately to Need During Recession, Contrary to New Study’s Claims

September 10, 2014

A recent study from researchers at the Brookings Institution and the University of Nevada concludes that the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) program responded to increased need during the Great Recession in the majority of states as a good safety net program would.  This...

TANF at 18: A Weakened Role and Not a Model for Safety Net Reform

August 22, 2014

Eighteen years ago today, President Clinton signed into law the Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act of 1996 — commonly known as “welfare reform.”  A key component was its creation of the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) block grant to replace Aid to Families with Dependent Children (AFDC).

Since then, TANF has played a shrinking...

Ryan’s “Opportunity Grant” Would Likely Force Cuts in Food and Housing Assistance

July 29, 2014

House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan maintains that consolidating 11 safety-net and related programs into a single “Opportunity Grant” would give states the flexibility to provide specialized services to low-income people.  But providing these additional services would require cutting assistance funded through the Opportunity Grant to other needy people.  And because...

Why Ryan’s Proposed Work Requirements Are Cause for Concern

July 25, 2014

House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan’s new poverty plan predictably showcases the 1996 welfare law, which replaced Aid to Families with Dependent Children (AFDC) with Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF), as a model for reforming other safety net programs.  For...

Ryan’s Rhetoric Doesn’t Match His Proposal’s Reality

July 24, 2014

House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan left the impression today that his proposed Opportunity Grant will allow low-income individuals to get income assistance as well as help they may need to go to school, get off drugs, and succeed in the workplace.  That picture, however, doesn’t reflect the reality of his proposal.

Chairman Ryan spoke eloquently this morning about “Andrea,” a...

Why the 1996 Welfare Law Is Not a Model for Other Safety-Net Programs

July 22, 2014

House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan’s upcoming poverty plan will likely showcase the 1996 welfare law, which replaced Aid to Families with Dependent Children (AFDC) with Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) — a block grant with fixed federal funding but broad...

With Federal Funds Gone, States Take the Lead on Subsidized Jobs

January 30, 2014

I highlighted yesterday the success of a 2009 Recovery Act program through which 39 states and the District of Columbia placed 260,000 low-income parents and young people in subsidized jobs, mostly in the private sector.  The federal funding for that program dried up a few years ago.  But several states — recognizing that...

Subsidized Jobs Work

January 29, 2014

Eduardo Porter’s New York Times piece today on government investment to boost jobs and demand cites the success of a 2009 Recovery Act program through which 39 states plus the District of Columbia (see...

New Evidence That Subsidized Jobs Programs Work

September 9, 2013

Thirty-nine states and the District of Columbia used $1.3 billion from the TANF (Temporary Assistance for Needy Families) Emergency Fund to place more than 260,000 low-income adults and youth in temporary jobs in the private and public sectors during the...

Unemployment - job application

Welfare Reform’s No Model for SNAP

June 28, 2013

As House leaders consider next steps on the farm bill (which the House rejected last week), a key question is the fate of its punitive Southerland amendment, which would reward states that end SNAP benefits for...

Pages