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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...

TANF Provided a Weak Safety Net During and After Recession

March 4, 2013

Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF), which provides basic assistance to families with little or no income, responded only modestly to the severe recession that began in December 2007, exposing its inadequacy as a safety net, as we explain in a new paper.

We found that:


5 Ways TANF Work Requirements Could Better Promote Work

February 28, 2013

A congressional hearing this morning examined the Administration’s policy of giving states waivers to test new ways to help recipients of Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) move from welfare to work. ...


TANF Block Grant Is Not a Model for Other Programs

October 11, 2012

An op-ed in today’s Wall Street Journal sings the praises of the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) block grant, claiming it shows that block-granting Medicaid would enable states to operate better programs for less money. ...

Five Things To Know About the TANF Work Rules

September 18, 2012

The House will vote Thursday on a bill to block the Administration from allowing states to test new ways to help recipients of Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) move from welfare to work.  While this issue has received lots of attention, there’s been little discussion of how TANF’s current work requirements...

TANF at 16: Time to Retool

August 22, 2012

Sixteen 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...

5 Ways Waivers Will Strengthen Welfare Reform

July 13, 2012

Despite mounting complaints from conservatives, the Obama Administration’s announcement yesterday that it will give states waivers to run demonstration projects in their TANF programs will not kill or undermine welfare reform.  Indeed, it will strengthen welfare reform by giving states greater...

Weakened Safety Net Devastates Families

June 20, 2012

A new Huffington Post article starkly portrays TANF’s failure to provide a safety net in Georgia.  It vividly reminds us how important the safety net is to families in need – and the devastating consequences that can result when families who are desperately seeking help are turned away....

Fixing Some of TANF’s Failures

June 6, 2012

All three witnesses at a hearing yesterday on Temporary Assistance for Needy Families agreed that TANF has failed in two important respects.  First, it has not adequately prepared program participants for long-term employment...