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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: Gibbs, Deborah; Kasten, Jennifer; Bir, Anupa; Duncan, Dean; Hoover, Sonja
    Reference Type: Journal Article
    Year: 2006

    The TANF program provides financial assistance to more than 500,000 children in relative care through child-only TANF grants, yet little information exists to describe this population. This study explored the service needs and well-being of children in TANF child-only cases with relative caregivers, using secondary analysis of national survey data and case studies in five states. Secondary analyses suggested that these children compare favorably to children in kinship and foster care on many measures of well-being, but some indications of behavioral and mental health problems were seen. Case studies suggest that many children in TANF child-only cases with relative caregivers have extensive service needs. Taken together, these findings suggest advantages of relative caregiver arrangements for children in TANF child-only cases, as well as cause for concern. Relative care is generally believed to be preferable to foster care with nonrelatives when children cannot remain with parents. However, children often experience substantial difficulties as a result of their previous...

    The TANF program provides financial assistance to more than 500,000 children in relative care through child-only TANF grants, yet little information exists to describe this population. This study explored the service needs and well-being of children in TANF child-only cases with relative caregivers, using secondary analysis of national survey data and case studies in five states. Secondary analyses suggested that these children compare favorably to children in kinship and foster care on many measures of well-being, but some indications of behavioral and mental health problems were seen. Case studies suggest that many children in TANF child-only cases with relative caregivers have extensive service needs. Taken together, these findings suggest advantages of relative caregiver arrangements for children in TANF child-only cases, as well as cause for concern. Relative care is generally believed to be preferable to foster care with nonrelatives when children cannot remain with parents. However, children often experience substantial difficulties as a result of their previous experiences and separation from parents, and the TANF system lacks the necessary resources to respond to them. (author abstract)

  • Individual Author: Farrell, Mary; Fishman, Michael; Laud, Stephanie; Allen, Vincena
    Reference Type: Report
    Year: 2000

    Under the Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act (PRWORA)of 1996, most families receiving Temporary Assistance to Needy Families (TANF) are subject to work requirements and time limits on benefit receipt.  However, one portion of the TANF caseload, cases where only a child or children are receiving assistance, are generally exempt from these federal requirements.  These "child-only" cases are not currently growing in absolute numbers but are becoming an increasing proportion of the overall TANF caseload.  In 1998, child-only cases made up 23 percent of the TANF caseload nationally, ranging from 10 percent to 47 percent of state caseloads.  This has led to increasing interest in understanding the characteristics of child-only cases and the program services they receive.

    A variety of circumstances result in child-only cases.  In some cases, the child is not living with a parent, but with a relative, who chooses not to be included in the assistance unit or whose income and assets preclude him or her from receiving cash assistance.  In other situations...

    Under the Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act (PRWORA)of 1996, most families receiving Temporary Assistance to Needy Families (TANF) are subject to work requirements and time limits on benefit receipt.  However, one portion of the TANF caseload, cases where only a child or children are receiving assistance, are generally exempt from these federal requirements.  These "child-only" cases are not currently growing in absolute numbers but are becoming an increasing proportion of the overall TANF caseload.  In 1998, child-only cases made up 23 percent of the TANF caseload nationally, ranging from 10 percent to 47 percent of state caseloads.  This has led to increasing interest in understanding the characteristics of child-only cases and the program services they receive.

    A variety of circumstances result in child-only cases.  In some cases, the child is not living with a parent, but with a relative, who chooses not to be included in the assistance unit or whose income and assets preclude him or her from receiving cash assistance.  In other situations, the child is living with a parent, but the parent is a Supplemental Security Income (SSI) recipient, a non-qualified alien, a qualified alien who entered the country after August 1996, a sanctioned adult, or otherwise excluded.

    The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) contracted with The Lewin Group to obtain more information about the characteristics and trends of the child-only population.  This report describes how federal and state policies affect child-only caseloads, discusses the national TANF and child-only caseload trends, and examines the characteristics of child-only cases.  For a more in-depth review, The Lewin Group focused on three states — California, Florida, and Missouri — interviewing state and county officials and staff, conducting case file reviews in one county in each state, and analyzing administrative data. (author abstract)

  • Individual Author: Gibbs, Deborah; Kasten, Jennifer; Bir, Anupa; Hoover, Sonja; Duncan, Dean; Mitchell, Janet
    Reference Type: Report
    Year: 2004

    Since the establishment of the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) program, much attention has been given to reductions in the number of welfare cases. Welfare cases declined nationally by 52 percent between 1996 and 2001; however, child-only cases declined by much less. Thus, while the number of child-only cases has fluctuated over time, their proportionate share of the TANF caseload has increased. Children in TANF child-only cases with relative caregivers occupy uncertain territory between the TANF and the child welfare service systems. Since these children are exempt from work requirements and not expected to move to self-sufficiency prior to adulthood, they are not well aligned with the TANF agency’s expectations and service offerings. Because they have not been identified as having experienced maltreatment, they are outside the child welfare system’s protective mandate, although they may be in need of supportive services. (author abstract)

    Since the establishment of the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) program, much attention has been given to reductions in the number of welfare cases. Welfare cases declined nationally by 52 percent between 1996 and 2001; however, child-only cases declined by much less. Thus, while the number of child-only cases has fluctuated over time, their proportionate share of the TANF caseload has increased. Children in TANF child-only cases with relative caregivers occupy uncertain territory between the TANF and the child welfare service systems. Since these children are exempt from work requirements and not expected to move to self-sufficiency prior to adulthood, they are not well aligned with the TANF agency’s expectations and service offerings. Because they have not been identified as having experienced maltreatment, they are outside the child welfare system’s protective mandate, although they may be in need of supportive services. (author abstract)

  • Individual Author: Speiglman, Richard; Mauldon, Jane
    Reference Type: Conference Paper
    Year: 2013

    This presentation examines TANF child-only cases and how different national, state, and county policies affect these caseloads across the country.  

    This presentation was given at the 2013 National Association of Welfare Research and Statistics (NAWRS) Annual Workshop.

    This presentation examines TANF child-only cases and how different national, state, and county policies affect these caseloads across the country.  

    This presentation was given at the 2013 National Association of Welfare Research and Statistics (NAWRS) Annual Workshop.

  • Individual Author: Mauldon, Jane; Speiglman, Richard; Sogar, Christina; Stagner, Matthew
    Reference Type: Report
    Year: 2012

    Child-only cases were far from the center of attention when the federal Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) program was created in 1996, and even when it was reauthorized in 2005. However, with adult-aided cases at less than one-quarter of their pre-TANF levels, child-only cases have become a substantial presence in the nation’s TANF caseload, and interest in these cases is growing. In 2011 child-only cases represented about two in every five TANF cases.

    Child-only TANF aid reaches a diverse mix of children, including children living in the homes of relatives, children of parents who receive Supplemental Security Income (SSI), and U.S-born children of parents whose immigration status renders the parents ineligible for TANF benefits. These groups have little or nothing in common with each other. They also have little in common with adult-aided TANF recipients. Most crucially, child-only cases are not subject to the federal and state program rules that have driven down TANF caseloads since TANF’s inception in 1996.

    This report is written to aid policy...

    Child-only cases were far from the center of attention when the federal Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) program was created in 1996, and even when it was reauthorized in 2005. However, with adult-aided cases at less than one-quarter of their pre-TANF levels, child-only cases have become a substantial presence in the nation’s TANF caseload, and interest in these cases is growing. In 2011 child-only cases represented about two in every five TANF cases.

    Child-only TANF aid reaches a diverse mix of children, including children living in the homes of relatives, children of parents who receive Supplemental Security Income (SSI), and U.S-born children of parents whose immigration status renders the parents ineligible for TANF benefits. These groups have little or nothing in common with each other. They also have little in common with adult-aided TANF recipients. Most crucially, child-only cases are not subject to the federal and state program rules that have driven down TANF caseloads since TANF’s inception in 1996.

    This report is written to aid policy makers as they contemplate modifications to TANF. It has three goals: to describe child-only policies and explore how these policies create and shape the three distinct child-only caseloads; to provide information about the needs of the children and adults in the households that receive child-only aid; and to situate child-only TANF policy in the context of other relevant policies.

    Among the relevant trends are shifts in foster care policy (which can affect NPC child-only TANF caseloads), patterns of immigrant location within the United States (which influence IIP child-only caseloads), and the availability of SSI aid for low-income parents. This report emphasizes the fact that policy changes to TANF must address child-only cases, paying explicit attention to each of the four TANF caseloads separately – the three child-only caseloads referenced above plus adult-aided cases. The authors of this report provide recommendations for policymakers to improve TANF aid to child-only cases. (author abstract)

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