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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: Jayakody, Rukmalie; Danziger, Sheldon; Pollack, Harold
    Reference Type: Journal Article
    Year: 2000

    Welfare reform transformed the traditional entitlement to cash welfare under Aid to Families with Dependent Children (AFDC) into a transitional program known as Temporary Assistance to Needy Families (TANF). Because of the work requirements and the time-limited nature of assistance, policy makers are increasingly confronted with what to do when welfare recipients do not effectively make the transition from welfare-to-work, and are increasingly using the language of public health to determine who is 'employable' and who is not. Thus, renewed attention is being focused on the individual characteristics of participants themselves, particularly specific diagnoses that might reduce employability. This paper focuses on substance abuse and mental health problems among single mothers and examines their relationship to welfare receipt. We analyze data from the 1994 and 1995 National Household Survey of Drug Abuse (NHSDA), and find that 19 percent of welfare recipients meet the criteria for a DSM-III-R psychiatric diagnosis. About the same percentage have used illicit drugs...

    Welfare reform transformed the traditional entitlement to cash welfare under Aid to Families with Dependent Children (AFDC) into a transitional program known as Temporary Assistance to Needy Families (TANF). Because of the work requirements and the time-limited nature of assistance, policy makers are increasingly confronted with what to do when welfare recipients do not effectively make the transition from welfare-to-work, and are increasingly using the language of public health to determine who is 'employable' and who is not. Thus, renewed attention is being focused on the individual characteristics of participants themselves, particularly specific diagnoses that might reduce employability. This paper focuses on substance abuse and mental health problems among single mothers and examines their relationship to welfare receipt. We analyze data from the 1994 and 1995 National Household Survey of Drug Abuse (NHSDA), and find that 19 percent of welfare recipients meet the criteria for a DSM-III-R psychiatric diagnosis. About the same percentage have used illicit drugs during the previous year. Logistic regression results indicate that mental and behavioral health problems are significant barriers to self-sufficiency that are increasingly important in this era of time-limited benefits. (author abstract)

  • Individual Author: van Olphen, Juliana ; Freudenberg, Nicholas
    Reference Type: Journal Article
    Year: 2004

    Substance abuse is a significant health and social problem in many low income urban communities. Finding appropriate help for drug users has been identified as a significant barrier to reducing the harm from drug abuse. This report presents findings from a survey of service providers in the Central and East Harlem communities, New York City, conducted in 2000 to identify policy obstacles that impeded clients’ attempts to overcome substance use and related problems. Policies can affect substance users by making access to drug treatment more difficult or by imposing unrealistic expectations on substance users for eligibility for benefit programs. Respondents to the survey were asked to rate 30 specific policies as harmful or helpful to their clients and to assess how the policies acted as barriers or facilitators to getting services and reducing drug use. Eleven policies in the areas of drug treatment, corrections, and Medicaid were rated as harmful to their clients by more than 50% of the respondents. We discuss the implications of these and other findings for drug users’ ability...

    Substance abuse is a significant health and social problem in many low income urban communities. Finding appropriate help for drug users has been identified as a significant barrier to reducing the harm from drug abuse. This report presents findings from a survey of service providers in the Central and East Harlem communities, New York City, conducted in 2000 to identify policy obstacles that impeded clients’ attempts to overcome substance use and related problems. Policies can affect substance users by making access to drug treatment more difficult or by imposing unrealistic expectations on substance users for eligibility for benefit programs. Respondents to the survey were asked to rate 30 specific policies as harmful or helpful to their clients and to assess how the policies acted as barriers or facilitators to getting services and reducing drug use. Eleven policies in the areas of drug treatment, corrections, and Medicaid were rated as harmful to their clients by more than 50% of the respondents. We discuss the implications of these and other findings for drug users’ ability to seek and receive help for their problems. (author abstract)

  • Individual Author: McLellan, A. Thomas; Gutman, Marjorie; Lynch, Kevin; McKay, James R.; Ketterlinus, Robert; Morgenstern, Jon; Woolis, Diana
    Reference Type: Journal Article
    Year: 2003

    To evaluate the effectiveness of a multiservice intervention designed to move substance abusing women on welfare to sobriety and self-sufficiency by addressing their substance abuse, domestic violence, employment, and basic needs. Design: A field evaluation with repeated measures at 6 and 12 months on an intent-to-treat sample of 529 women conducted in 11 selected sites across the country. There were significant improvements shown in substance use and family and social functioning by the 6-month point, and additional improvements in employment by the 12-month point. By 12 months, more than 46% were abstinent from alcohol and other drugs, and 30% were employed at least part-time. There were only modest improvements shown in the medical and psychiatric status of these women. These preliminary findings suggest that site-level interagency coordination and program-level case management were associated with improvements in the targeted areas as predicted by the model. Future work will require a more closely specified, manual-guided form of the intervention plus the inclusion of control...

    To evaluate the effectiveness of a multiservice intervention designed to move substance abusing women on welfare to sobriety and self-sufficiency by addressing their substance abuse, domestic violence, employment, and basic needs. Design: A field evaluation with repeated measures at 6 and 12 months on an intent-to-treat sample of 529 women conducted in 11 selected sites across the country. There were significant improvements shown in substance use and family and social functioning by the 6-month point, and additional improvements in employment by the 12-month point. By 12 months, more than 46% were abstinent from alcohol and other drugs, and 30% were employed at least part-time. There were only modest improvements shown in the medical and psychiatric status of these women. These preliminary findings suggest that site-level interagency coordination and program-level case management were associated with improvements in the targeted areas as predicted by the model. Future work will require a more closely specified, manual-guided form of the intervention plus the inclusion of control groups and cost measures to fully evaluate the cost benefits from the final form of the intervention. (author abstract)

  • Individual Author: Gutman, Marjorie A.; McKay, James; Ketterlinus, Robert D.; McLellan, A. Thomas
    Reference Type: Journal Article
    Year: 2003

    Aim: To assess the prevalence and relationship to later employment of potential barriers to work for substance-abusing women on Temporary Assistance to Needy Families (TANF) enrolled in a multiservice welfare-to-work program. Design: A field study with repeated measures and intent-to-treat sampling. Intervention: The CASAWORKS for Families (CWF) was delivered in 11 sites in nine states across the nation and featured integration of substance-abuse treatment and employment and work readiness services. Measurement: The Addiction Severity Index, supplemented with subject-appropriate questions. Sample: A total of 366 CWF women who completed interviews at program enrollment, and at 6 and 12 months later. Findings: Substance-abusing women on TANF in the CWF program exhibited multiple potential barriers to work at enrollment, averaging 6 out of 14 potential barriers assessed. They reported significantly more obstacles than a general welfare sample of women from the same locales. Few single barriers were significantly related to employment at 12 months. However, the total number of...

    Aim: To assess the prevalence and relationship to later employment of potential barriers to work for substance-abusing women on Temporary Assistance to Needy Families (TANF) enrolled in a multiservice welfare-to-work program. Design: A field study with repeated measures and intent-to-treat sampling. Intervention: The CASAWORKS for Families (CWF) was delivered in 11 sites in nine states across the nation and featured integration of substance-abuse treatment and employment and work readiness services. Measurement: The Addiction Severity Index, supplemented with subject-appropriate questions. Sample: A total of 366 CWF women who completed interviews at program enrollment, and at 6 and 12 months later. Findings: Substance-abusing women on TANF in the CWF program exhibited multiple potential barriers to work at enrollment, averaging 6 out of 14 potential barriers assessed. They reported significantly more obstacles than a general welfare sample of women from the same locales. Few single barriers were significantly related to employment at 12 months. However, the total number of potential barriers to work experienced, particularly at 6 months, was related to employment at 12 months. (author abstract)

  • Individual Author: Morgenstern, Jon; Hogue, Aaron; Dasaro, Christopher ; Kuerbis, Alexis
    Reference Type: Journal Article
    Year: 2008

    This study examined barriers to employability, motivation to abstain from substances and to work, and involvement in multiple service systems among male and female welfare applicants with alcohol- and drug-use problems. A representative sample (N = 1,431) of all persons applying for public assistance who screened positive for substance involvement over a 2-year period in a large urban county were recruited in welfare offices. Legal, education, general health, mental health, employment, housing, and child welfare barriers to employability were assessed, as were readiness to abstain from substance use and readiness to work. Only 1 in 20 participants reported no barrier other than substance use, whereas 70% reported at least two other barriers and 40% reported three or more. Moreover, 70% of participants experienced at least one additional barrier classified as "severe" and 30% experienced two or more. The number and type of barriers differed by gender. Latent class analysis revealed four main barriers-plus-readiness profiles among participants: (1) multiple barriers, (2) work...

    This study examined barriers to employability, motivation to abstain from substances and to work, and involvement in multiple service systems among male and female welfare applicants with alcohol- and drug-use problems. A representative sample (N = 1,431) of all persons applying for public assistance who screened positive for substance involvement over a 2-year period in a large urban county were recruited in welfare offices. Legal, education, general health, mental health, employment, housing, and child welfare barriers to employability were assessed, as were readiness to abstain from substance use and readiness to work. Only 1 in 20 participants reported no barrier other than substance use, whereas 70% reported at least two other barriers and 40% reported three or more. Moreover, 70% of participants experienced at least one additional barrier classified as "severe" and 30% experienced two or more. The number and type of barriers differed by gender. Latent class analysis revealed four main barriers-plus-readiness profiles among participants: (1) multiple barriers, (2) work experienced, (3) criminal justice, and (4) unstable housing. Findings suggest that comprehensive coordination among social service systems is needed to address the complex problems of low-income Americans with substance-use disorders. Classifying applicants based on barriers and readiness is a promising approach to developing innovative welfare programs to serve the diverse needs of men and women with substance-related problems. (author abstract)

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