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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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The SSRC Library collection is constantly growing and new research is added regularly. We welcome our users to submit a library item to help us grow our collection in response to your needs.


  • Individual Author: Saunders, Correne; Hetling, Andrea; Ovwigho, Pamela C.; Born, Catherine E.
    Reference Type: Journal Article
    Year: 2012

    Child welfare policy has historically emphasized the positive impact relative caregivers can have on foster children. This emphasis coupled with recent changes in the composition of the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) caseload has led to interest in child-only, relative caregiver cases. Child-only research, however, ignores cases in which the relative caregiver is also receiving benefits. Using the universe of welfare cases in Maryland in October 2005, this article compares and contrasts the demographic and case characteristics of parental and relative caregiver cases, also analyzing differences between cases with and without an adult receiving benefits. Findings indicate that relative caregivers have service needs that differ from those of parents and that recipient relative caregivers are more disadvantaged than child-only cases. (author abstract)

    Child welfare policy has historically emphasized the positive impact relative caregivers can have on foster children. This emphasis coupled with recent changes in the composition of the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) caseload has led to interest in child-only, relative caregiver cases. Child-only research, however, ignores cases in which the relative caregiver is also receiving benefits. Using the universe of welfare cases in Maryland in October 2005, this article compares and contrasts the demographic and case characteristics of parental and relative caregiver cases, also analyzing differences between cases with and without an adult receiving benefits. Findings indicate that relative caregivers have service needs that differ from those of parents and that recipient relative caregivers are more disadvantaged than child-only cases. (author abstract)

  • Individual Author: Hetling, Andrea; Born, Catherine E.
    Reference Type: Journal Article
    Year: 2005

    Objective: The establishment of the Family Violence Option (FVO) in 1997 was met with some controversy, as critics believed waivers from time limit and work requirements would hinder women's ability to leave welfare and find employment. Method: Using administrative and interview data from Maryland, multivariate equations analyze if domestic violence disclosure, administrative documentation, or waiver use had a statistically significant affect on one year employment and welfare use outcomes of individuals. Results: Waiver holders did not differ from nonvictims, but victims who are not documented received fewer months of welfare and earned less income. Conclusions: Findings do not indicate that FVO waivers encourage women to stay on welfare longer. However, the poor outcomes of undocumented victims indicate that some individuals may be slipping through the cracks of a well-intentioned policy. (author abstract)

    Objective: The establishment of the Family Violence Option (FVO) in 1997 was met with some controversy, as critics believed waivers from time limit and work requirements would hinder women's ability to leave welfare and find employment. Method: Using administrative and interview data from Maryland, multivariate equations analyze if domestic violence disclosure, administrative documentation, or waiver use had a statistically significant affect on one year employment and welfare use outcomes of individuals. Results: Waiver holders did not differ from nonvictims, but victims who are not documented received fewer months of welfare and earned less income. Conclusions: Findings do not indicate that FVO waivers encourage women to stay on welfare longer. However, the poor outcomes of undocumented victims indicate that some individuals may be slipping through the cracks of a well-intentioned policy. (author abstract)

  • Individual Author: Gilbert, Danielle; Nanda, Joy; Paige, David
    Reference Type: Journal Article
    Year: 2014

    Participation in women, infants and children (WIC), supplemental nutritional assistance program (SNAP), temporary assistance for needy families (TANF), and medical assistance program (MAP) programs provide critical nutrition and health benefits to low-income families. Concurrent enrollment in these programs provides a powerful safety net, yet simultaneous participation is reported to be low. Underutilization undermines program objectives, client well-being and food security. This paper examines concurrent participation among the most needy WIC clients, those at/below 100% of the federal poverty level (FPL), in SNAP, TANF and MAP. We examined the Maryland state WIC program infant electronic database (N = 34,409) for the 12-month period ending September 2010. Our analysis focused on two-thirds of these infants (N = 23,065) who were at/below the 100% FPL. Mothers’ mean age was 26.8 ± 6 years; 20.6% White; 52.7% African American, and 23.4% Hispanic. Approximately 10% of infants weighed <2,500 g and 1.5% weighed <1,500 g at birth. Average household income was $10,160; 55.7% were...

    Participation in women, infants and children (WIC), supplemental nutritional assistance program (SNAP), temporary assistance for needy families (TANF), and medical assistance program (MAP) programs provide critical nutrition and health benefits to low-income families. Concurrent enrollment in these programs provides a powerful safety net, yet simultaneous participation is reported to be low. Underutilization undermines program objectives, client well-being and food security. This paper examines concurrent participation among the most needy WIC clients, those at/below 100% of the federal poverty level (FPL), in SNAP, TANF and MAP. We examined the Maryland state WIC program infant electronic database (N = 34,409) for the 12-month period ending September 2010. Our analysis focused on two-thirds of these infants (N = 23,065) who were at/below the 100% FPL. Mothers’ mean age was 26.8 ± 6 years; 20.6% White; 52.7% African American, and 23.4% Hispanic. Approximately 10% of infants weighed <2,500 g and 1.5% weighed <1,500 g at birth. Average household income was $10,160; 55.7% were at/below 50% FPL. Two-thirds (68.4%) participated in MAP, 31% in SNAP and 9% in TANF. Only 8% were enrolled in all three programs whereas 28% were not enrolled in any. There was a statistically significant difference in mean age and household income between multi-program beneficiaries and mothers who solely participated in WIC: 25.6 ± 5 years and $7,298 ± $4,496 compared with 27.2 ± 6 years and $12,216 ± $6,920, respectively (p < 0.001). Among WIC families at or below 100% FPL, only 8% received multi-program benefits. Specific factors responsible for participation on an individual level are not available. To optimize enrollment, a coordinated effort is essential to identify and overcome barriers to concurrent participation among these families. (author abstract)

  • Individual Author: Forry, Nicole; Simkin, Shana; Wheeler, Edyth J.; Bock, Allison
    Reference Type: Journal Article
    Year: 2013

    Through focus groups and a written activity, this study explores and compares 41 low-income Maryland parents’ childcare priorities and definitions of ideal high-quality care. Features of ideal high-quality care identified by parents align with professional standards and with descriptions found in existing literature, though parents’ operationalized definitions of quality varied, and their expectations were lower than most professional standards. There was also strong alignment between identified features of high-quality care and parents’ priorities in their most recent childcare searches, though parents focused less on structured learning opportunities when discussing childcare priorities and more on practical features of care. Most features of care discussed by parents are included in Maryland’s Quality Rating and Improvement System (QRIS), though some of the specific elements parents cited are not included. Findings from this study could be used to inform marketing and design of consumer education campaigns, QRIS, and survey development. (author abstract)

    Through focus groups and a written activity, this study explores and compares 41 low-income Maryland parents’ childcare priorities and definitions of ideal high-quality care. Features of ideal high-quality care identified by parents align with professional standards and with descriptions found in existing literature, though parents’ operationalized definitions of quality varied, and their expectations were lower than most professional standards. There was also strong alignment between identified features of high-quality care and parents’ priorities in their most recent childcare searches, though parents focused less on structured learning opportunities when discussing childcare priorities and more on practical features of care. Most features of care discussed by parents are included in Maryland’s Quality Rating and Improvement System (QRIS), though some of the specific elements parents cited are not included. Findings from this study could be used to inform marketing and design of consumer education campaigns, QRIS, and survey development. (author abstract)

  • Individual Author: Blumenberg, Evelyn; Pierce, Gregory; Smart, Michael
    Reference Type: Journal Article
    Year: 2015

    Access to automobiles may be particularly important to housing voucher recipients, who are more likely than residents of public housing to live in suburban neighborhoods where transit service is often limited. Access to high-quality public transit is more likely to benefit low-income households who live in dense central-city neighborhoods in close proximity to employment. In this analysis we draw on survey data from two housing voucher experiments—the Moving to Opportunity for Fair Housing and Welfare-to-Work Voucher programs—to examine the relationship between access to automobiles and public transit and the employment and earnings outcomes of program participants.

    Our research underscores the importance of automobiles in achieving desirable outcomes for families who receive subsidized housing. Access to automobiles is associated with improved economic outcomes for all program participants and better facilitates job acquisition, job retention, and earnings than public transit. Our findings suggest the need to better link housing and transportation programs and to pursue a...

    Access to automobiles may be particularly important to housing voucher recipients, who are more likely than residents of public housing to live in suburban neighborhoods where transit service is often limited. Access to high-quality public transit is more likely to benefit low-income households who live in dense central-city neighborhoods in close proximity to employment. In this analysis we draw on survey data from two housing voucher experiments—the Moving to Opportunity for Fair Housing and Welfare-to-Work Voucher programs—to examine the relationship between access to automobiles and public transit and the employment and earnings outcomes of program participants.

    Our research underscores the importance of automobiles in achieving desirable outcomes for families who receive subsidized housing. Access to automobiles is associated with improved economic outcomes for all program participants and better facilitates job acquisition, job retention, and earnings than public transit. Our findings suggest the need to better link housing and transportation programs and to pursue a set of policies that increase automobile access among all subsidized housing recipients. (Author abstract)

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