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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: Gueron, Judith; Pauly, Edward
    Reference Type: Book Chapter/Book
    Year: 1991

    From Welfare to Work appears at a critical moment, when all fifty states are wrestling with tough budgetary and program choices as they implement the new federal welfare reforms. This book is a definitive analysis of the landmark social research that has directly informed those choices: the rigorous evaluation of programs designed to help welfare recipients become employed and self-sufficient. It discusses forty-five past and current studies, focusing on the series of seminal evaluations conducted by the Manpower Demonstration Research Corporation over the last fifteen years.

    Which of these welfare-to-work programs have worked? For whom and at what cost? In answering these key questions, the authors clearly delineate the trade-offs facing policymakers as they strive to achieve the multiple goals of alleviating poverty, helping the most disadvantaged, curtailing dependence, and effecting welfare savings. The authors present compelling evidence that the generally low-cost, primarily job search-oriented programs of the late 1980s achieved sustained earnings gains and welfare...

    From Welfare to Work appears at a critical moment, when all fifty states are wrestling with tough budgetary and program choices as they implement the new federal welfare reforms. This book is a definitive analysis of the landmark social research that has directly informed those choices: the rigorous evaluation of programs designed to help welfare recipients become employed and self-sufficient. It discusses forty-five past and current studies, focusing on the series of seminal evaluations conducted by the Manpower Demonstration Research Corporation over the last fifteen years.

    Which of these welfare-to-work programs have worked? For whom and at what cost? In answering these key questions, the authors clearly delineate the trade-offs facing policymakers as they strive to achieve the multiple goals of alleviating poverty, helping the most disadvantaged, curtailing dependence, and effecting welfare savings. The authors present compelling evidence that the generally low-cost, primarily job search-oriented programs of the late 1980s achieved sustained earnings gains and welfare savings. However, getting people out of poverty and helping those who are most disadvantaged may require some intensive, higher-cost services such as education and training. The authors explore a range of studies now in progress that will address these and other urgent issues. They also point to encouraging results from programs that were operating in San Diego and Baltimore, which suggest the potential value of a mixed strategy: combining job search and other low-cost activities for a broad portion of the caseload with more specialized services for smaller groups.

    Offering both an authoritative synthesis of work already done and recommendations for future innovation, From Welfare to Work will be the standard resource and required reading for practitioners and students in the social policy, social welfare, and academic communities. (author abstract) 

  • Individual Author: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services
    Reference Type: Regulation
    Year: 1999

    The Administration for Children and Families (ACF) issues regulations governing key provisions of the new welfare block grant program enacted in 1996—the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families, or TANF, program. It replaces the national welfare program known as Aid to Families with Dependent Children (AFDC) and the related programs known as the Job Opportunities and Basic Skills Training Program (JOBS) and the Emergency Assistance (EA) program. These rules reflect new Federal, State, and Tribal relationships in the administration of welfare programs; a new focus on moving recipients into work; and a new emphasis on program information, measurement, and performance regulatory reform (author abstract). 

    64 Fed. Reg. 17720 (1999). 

     

    The Administration for Children and Families (ACF) issues regulations governing key provisions of the new welfare block grant program enacted in 1996—the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families, or TANF, program. It replaces the national welfare program known as Aid to Families with Dependent Children (AFDC) and the related programs known as the Job Opportunities and Basic Skills Training Program (JOBS) and the Emergency Assistance (EA) program. These rules reflect new Federal, State, and Tribal relationships in the administration of welfare programs; a new focus on moving recipients into work; and a new emphasis on program information, measurement, and performance regulatory reform (author abstract). 

    64 Fed. Reg. 17720 (1999). 

     

  • Individual Author: Brown, June
    Reference Type: Report
    Year: 1999

    This is one of three OIG reports on how States administer client sanctions under TANF. One companion report, Temporary Assistance for Needy Families: Improving the Effectiveness and Efficiency of Client Sanctions (OEI-09-98-00290), provides a broad overview of State administration of client sanctions. The other, Temporary Assistance for Needy Families:  Improving Client Sanction Notices (OEI-09-98-00292), reviews State methods for informing clients of sanction decisions via written notices.

    The purpose of this report is to determine how States inform clients about sanction policies under the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) program.  We find that:

    - TANF offices explain sanctions to clients repeatedly, using diverse methods

    - Orientation materials commonly lack information about the amount of the sanction and the definition of good cause

    - Most States describe other vital information about sanctions completely and present it in a logical format

    - TANF clients do not fully understand sanctions and, according to caseworkers, are not...

    This is one of three OIG reports on how States administer client sanctions under TANF. One companion report, Temporary Assistance for Needy Families: Improving the Effectiveness and Efficiency of Client Sanctions (OEI-09-98-00290), provides a broad overview of State administration of client sanctions. The other, Temporary Assistance for Needy Families:  Improving Client Sanction Notices (OEI-09-98-00292), reviews State methods for informing clients of sanction decisions via written notices.

    The purpose of this report is to determine how States inform clients about sanction policies under the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) program.  We find that:

    - TANF offices explain sanctions to clients repeatedly, using diverse methods

    - Orientation materials commonly lack information about the amount of the sanction and the definition of good cause

    - Most States describe other vital information about sanctions completely and present it in a logical format

    - TANF clients do not fully understand sanctions and, according to caseworkers, are not concerned about sanctions until they are imposed

    We recommend that the Administration for Children and Families encourage States to provide complete, correct, and understandable information to clients on: the causes of sanctions; the amounts of sanctions; the duration of sanctions; “good cause” reasons for work exemptions; and client appeal, fair hearing, and, if applicable, conciliation rights. (author abstract)

  • Individual Author: Brown, June
    Reference Type: Report
    Year: 1999

    We purposefully selected eight States in which to visit at least one urban and one rural office. In total, we visited 26 TANF offices, where we held caseworker focus groups, director interviews, and limited case-file reviews of recently sanctioned cases with individual caseworkers. At 19 of the offices, we conducted client focus groups and also interviewed at least one advocacy group in each State. In addition, we collected sanction policies and notices from each State. Lastly, we reviewed 47 notices issued by the offices that we visited, evaluating each for completeness and clarity.

    The methods we used during this study pose some distinct advantages and disadvantages for the scope of our findings. The purposeful sample allowed us to examine sanction implementation in States with widely varying attributes. We also gained a thorough understanding of our respondents’ relationships with and attitudes towards sanctions. Our methodology precludes us, however, from commenting on the extent to which our findings and observations are representative nationwide. We also cannot...

    We purposefully selected eight States in which to visit at least one urban and one rural office. In total, we visited 26 TANF offices, where we held caseworker focus groups, director interviews, and limited case-file reviews of recently sanctioned cases with individual caseworkers. At 19 of the offices, we conducted client focus groups and also interviewed at least one advocacy group in each State. In addition, we collected sanction policies and notices from each State. Lastly, we reviewed 47 notices issued by the offices that we visited, evaluating each for completeness and clarity.

    The methods we used during this study pose some distinct advantages and disadvantages for the scope of our findings. The purposeful sample allowed us to examine sanction implementation in States with widely varying attributes. We also gained a thorough understanding of our respondents’ relationships with and attitudes towards sanctions. Our methodology precludes us, however, from commenting on the extent to which our findings and observations are representative nationwide. We also cannot evaluate direct outcomes of sanction policies, procedures, and practices on clients and the program.

    Comprehensive and understandable notices can improve the sanction process. A sanction notice with complete information in a clear format can improve client understanding and help alleviate frustration for both clients and caseworkers.

    Sanction notices are deficient in some respects. Although most notices adequately explain some sanction details, many lack instructions on how to cure sanctions and do not reference local legal aid. A few notices contain incorrect information which can mislead clients and create extra work for caseworkers. Confusing wording on notices impedes client understanding, an effect heightened by language barriers. (author abstract)

  • Individual Author: Born, Catherine E.; Caudill, Pamela J.; Cordero, Melinda L.
    Reference Type: Report
    Year: 1999

    One of the most radically different features of Maryland s reformed welfare system is its use of the full family sanction whereby, for non-compliance with certain program requirements, the entire family s cash assistance grant is terminated. The full family sanction option became available to states under the Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act of 1996 (PRWORA). Previously, federal law did not generally permit states to terminate benefits to an entire household on the basis of an adult's non-compliant behavior. Under pre-PRWORA, waiver-based welfare reform, several states experimented with full family sanctions and a few reports on their experiences have been issued. For the most part though states which elected the full family sanctioning option under PRWORA had to do so with limited historical experience to guide them and virtually no empirical data to help them predict what the magnitude and effects of full family sanctioning might be. Given the newness and severity of this penalty, however, it seems imperative that states which adopted this policy...

    One of the most radically different features of Maryland s reformed welfare system is its use of the full family sanction whereby, for non-compliance with certain program requirements, the entire family s cash assistance grant is terminated. The full family sanction option became available to states under the Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act of 1996 (PRWORA). Previously, federal law did not generally permit states to terminate benefits to an entire household on the basis of an adult's non-compliant behavior. Under pre-PRWORA, waiver-based welfare reform, several states experimented with full family sanctions and a few reports on their experiences have been issued. For the most part though states which elected the full family sanctioning option under PRWORA had to do so with limited historical experience to guide them and virtually no empirical data to help them predict what the magnitude and effects of full family sanctioning might be. Given the newness and severity of this penalty, however, it seems imperative that states which adopted this policy option examine how that policy has been working.

    Thanks to a long-standing research partnership between the Maryland Department of Human Resources and the University of Maryland School of Social Work, we are able to empirically examine this and other welfare reform issues. Since the outset of reform in Maryland (October, 1996) the School has been carrying out a large, longitudinal study, Life After Welfare, which tracks the experiences of several thousand families who have left the cash assistance rolls. The present report uses data from the Life After Welfare study and universe data from the state's welfare information management systems to examine the use and effects of full family sanctions for noncompliance with work and non-cooperation with child support during the first 18 months of reform (October, 1996 - March, 1998). (author abstract)

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