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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: Kilpatrick, Robert W.
    Reference Type: Journal Article
    Year: 1973

    Comparisons of the extent of poverty at different times are greatly affected by whether the dividing line between the poor and the rest of the population changes as average income grows over time, and if so to what degree. The absolute income standard and the relative income standard are polar hypotheses about the income elasticity of the poverty line. Under an absolute standard of poverty, the poverty line is constant (in deflated dollars). In terms of what people thought of as poverty a century ago, the absolute standard implies that today almost no one is poor in the United States. Under a relative standard of poverty, the poverty line changes in the same proportion as average income if the relative income distribution is constant. The relative standard implies that if the shape of the income distribution is the same today as a century ago, the poverty problem is now no less. Probably more likely than either of these extremes is that people's judgment about the dividing line between poverty and a more adequate standard of living is determined by a mixture of concerns over both...

    Comparisons of the extent of poverty at different times are greatly affected by whether the dividing line between the poor and the rest of the population changes as average income grows over time, and if so to what degree. The absolute income standard and the relative income standard are polar hypotheses about the income elasticity of the poverty line. Under an absolute standard of poverty, the poverty line is constant (in deflated dollars). In terms of what people thought of as poverty a century ago, the absolute standard implies that today almost no one is poor in the United States. Under a relative standard of poverty, the poverty line changes in the same proportion as average income if the relative income distribution is constant. The relative standard implies that if the shape of the income distribution is the same today as a century ago, the poverty problem is now no less. Probably more likely than either of these extremes is that people's judgment about the dividing line between poverty and a more adequate standard of living is determined by a mixture of concerns over both absolute- and relative conditions. If so, growth in average income increases the poverty line, but by less than in the same proportion. This proposition-that the income elasticity of the poverty line is between zero and one-is the hypothesis tested in this paper. (author abstract)

  • Individual Author: Ross, Heather; Sawhill, Isabel V.; MacIntosh, Anita R.
    Reference Type: Book Chapter/Book
    Year: 1975

    Single parent families, usually headed by women, are transitional in two important senses: they frequently represent a transitional stage between marriages; and they are a symptom of the transition from a "distributive" family structure, in which a man provides resources for financially dependent women and children, to a form characterized by less specialized marital roles and more equal sharing of the physical care and financial support of children. This book examines the social and public policy implications of these changes. It is divided into seven chapters. Chapter 1, "Introduction," provides reasons for research and explanations for change. Chapter 2, "Families Headed by Women: Their Growth and Changing Composition," explores recent trends and family demography. Chapter 3,"Marital Instability," examines marriage from psychological, economic, and social perspectives. Chapter 4, "Race and Family Structure," discusses racial family differences and recent trends in female headedness among black families. Chapter 5, "Welfare and Female-Headed Families," examines the roles of...

    Single parent families, usually headed by women, are transitional in two important senses: they frequently represent a transitional stage between marriages; and they are a symptom of the transition from a "distributive" family structure, in which a man provides resources for financially dependent women and children, to a form characterized by less specialized marital roles and more equal sharing of the physical care and financial support of children. This book examines the social and public policy implications of these changes. It is divided into seven chapters. Chapter 1, "Introduction," provides reasons for research and explanations for change. Chapter 2, "Families Headed by Women: Their Growth and Changing Composition," explores recent trends and family demography. Chapter 3,"Marital Instability," examines marriage from psychological, economic, and social perspectives. Chapter 4, "Race and Family Structure," discusses racial family differences and recent trends in female headedness among black families. Chapter 5, "Welfare and Female-Headed Families," examines the roles of eligibility, benefits, and incentives. Chapter 6, "What Happens to Children in Female-Headed Families?" evaluates existing knowledge and explores negative consequences for children. Chapter 7, "The Family in Transition," sums up the book's themes and suggests new directions for research and public policy. A bibliography is appended to each chapter. The book includes six appendices providing various types of statistical analysis, 50 statistical tables, and four figures. An author and subject index is included. (publisher abstract)

  • Individual Author: Jencks, Christopher
    Reference Type: Book Chapter/Book
    Year: 1994

    How widespread is homelessness, how did it happen, and what can be done about it? These are the questions explored by Christopher Jencks, America’s foremost analyst of social problems. Jencks examines the standard explanations and finds that the deinstitutionalization of the mentally ill, the invention of crack cocaine, rising joblessness among men, declining marriage rates, cuts in welfare benefits, and the destruction of skid row have all played a role. Changes in the housing market have had less impact than many claim, however, and real federal housing subsidies actually doubled during the 1980s. Not confining his mission to studying the homeless, Jencks proposes several practical approaches to helping the homeless. (author abstract)

    How widespread is homelessness, how did it happen, and what can be done about it? These are the questions explored by Christopher Jencks, America’s foremost analyst of social problems. Jencks examines the standard explanations and finds that the deinstitutionalization of the mentally ill, the invention of crack cocaine, rising joblessness among men, declining marriage rates, cuts in welfare benefits, and the destruction of skid row have all played a role. Changes in the housing market have had less impact than many claim, however, and real federal housing subsidies actually doubled during the 1980s. Not confining his mission to studying the homeless, Jencks proposes several practical approaches to helping the homeless. (author abstract)

  • Individual Author: O'Brien Caughy, Margaret; DiPietro, Janet A. ; Strobino, Donna M.
    Reference Type: Journal Article
    Year: 1994

    The impact of day-care participation during the first 3 years of life on the cognitive functioning of school age children was examined. 867 5- and 6-year-old children from the National Longitudinal Survey of Youth who completed the 1986 assessment were included in the sample. The dependent measures were scores on the Peabody Individual Achievement Test (PIAT) subtests of mathematics and reading recognition. In addition to day-care participation, the impact of the pattern of day-care was examined by analyzing the effect of the number of years in day-care, the timing of initiation of day-care, and type of day-care arrangement. After controlling for confounding factors, there were significant interactions between all 3 measures of day-care patterning and family income for reading recognition performance. This association was further examined by exploring the interaction between the pattern of day-care participation and the quality of the home environment. Initiation of day-care attendance before the first birthday was associated with higher reading recognition scores for children...

    The impact of day-care participation during the first 3 years of life on the cognitive functioning of school age children was examined. 867 5- and 6-year-old children from the National Longitudinal Survey of Youth who completed the 1986 assessment were included in the sample. The dependent measures were scores on the Peabody Individual Achievement Test (PIAT) subtests of mathematics and reading recognition. In addition to day-care participation, the impact of the pattern of day-care was examined by analyzing the effect of the number of years in day-care, the timing of initiation of day-care, and type of day-care arrangement. After controlling for confounding factors, there were significant interactions between all 3 measures of day-care patterning and family income for reading recognition performance. This association was further examined by exploring the interaction between the pattern of day-care participation and the quality of the home environment. Initiation of day-care attendance before the first birthday was associated with higher reading recognition scores for children from impoverished home environments and with lower scores for children from more optimal environments. In addition, a significant interaction between the type of day-care arrangement and the quality of the home environment emerged for mathematics performance. Center-based care in particular was associated with higher mathematics scores for impoverished children and with lower mathematics scores for children from more stimulating home environments. These findings are discussed in the context of developmental risk. (Author abstract)

  • Individual Author: Burkhauser, Richard V.; Couch, Kenneth A.; Glenn, Andrew J.
    Reference Type: Report
    Year: 1995

    This paper documents the declining relationship between low hourly wages and low household income over the last half-century and how this has reduced the share of minimum wage workers who live in poor households. It then compares recent and prospective increases in the earned income tax credit (EITC) and the minimum wage as methods of increasing the labor earnings of poor workers. Data from the Current Population Survey (CPS) are used to simulate the effects of both programs. Increases in the EITC between 1989 and 1992 delivered a much larger proportion of a given dollar of benefits to the poor than did increases in the minimum wage from $3.35 to $4.25. Scheduled increases in the EITC through 1996 will also do far more for the working poor than raising the minimum wage. (author abstract)

    This paper documents the declining relationship between low hourly wages and low household income over the last half-century and how this has reduced the share of minimum wage workers who live in poor households. It then compares recent and prospective increases in the earned income tax credit (EITC) and the minimum wage as methods of increasing the labor earnings of poor workers. Data from the Current Population Survey (CPS) are used to simulate the effects of both programs. Increases in the EITC between 1989 and 1992 delivered a much larger proportion of a given dollar of benefits to the poor than did increases in the minimum wage from $3.35 to $4.25. Scheduled increases in the EITC through 1996 will also do far more for the working poor than raising the minimum wage. (author abstract)

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