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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: Hoynes, Hilary W.; Page, Marianne E. ; Huff Stevens, Ann
    Reference Type: Report
    Year: 2009

    The goal of federal food and nutrition programs in the United States is to improve the nutritional well-being and health of low income families. A large body of literature evaluates the extent to which the Supplemental Program for Women Infants and Children (WIC) has accomplished this goal, but most studies have been based on research designs that compare program participants to non-participants. If selection into these programs is non-random then such comparisons will lead to biased estimates of the program’s true effects. In this study we use the rollout of the WIC program across counties to estimate the impact of the program on infant health. We find that the implementation of WIC lead to an increase in average birthweight and a decrease in the fraction of births that are classified as low birthweight. We find no evidence that these estimates are driven by changes in fertility. Back-of-the-envelope calculations suggest that the initiation of WIC lead to a ten percent increase in the birthweight of infants born to participating mothers. (author abstract)

    The goal of federal food and nutrition programs in the United States is to improve the nutritional well-being and health of low income families. A large body of literature evaluates the extent to which the Supplemental Program for Women Infants and Children (WIC) has accomplished this goal, but most studies have been based on research designs that compare program participants to non-participants. If selection into these programs is non-random then such comparisons will lead to biased estimates of the program’s true effects. In this study we use the rollout of the WIC program across counties to estimate the impact of the program on infant health. We find that the implementation of WIC lead to an increase in average birthweight and a decrease in the fraction of births that are classified as low birthweight. We find no evidence that these estimates are driven by changes in fertility. Back-of-the-envelope calculations suggest that the initiation of WIC lead to a ten percent increase in the birthweight of infants born to participating mothers. (author abstract)

  • Individual Author: Kreider, Brent; Pepper, John V.; Roy, Manan
    Reference Type: Report
    Year: 2012

    The Women, Infants, and Children Program (WIC) is considered a crucial component of the social safety net in the United States, yet there is limited supporting evidence on the effects of WIC on the nutritional well-being and food security of infants and young children. Two key identification problems have been especially difficult to address. First, the decision to take up WIC is endogenous as households are not randomly assigned to the program; recipients are likely to differ from nonrecipients in unobserved ways (e.g., prior health) that are related to associated outcomes. Second, survey respondents often fail to report receiving public assistance, and the existing literature has uncovered substantial degrees of systematic misclassification of WIC participation. Using data from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES), we apply recently developed partial identification methodologies to jointly account for these two identification problems in a single framework. Under relatively weak assumptions, we find that WIC reduces the prevalence of child food...

    The Women, Infants, and Children Program (WIC) is considered a crucial component of the social safety net in the United States, yet there is limited supporting evidence on the effects of WIC on the nutritional well-being and food security of infants and young children. Two key identification problems have been especially difficult to address. First, the decision to take up WIC is endogenous as households are not randomly assigned to the program; recipients are likely to differ from nonrecipients in unobserved ways (e.g., prior health) that are related to associated outcomes. Second, survey respondents often fail to report receiving public assistance, and the existing literature has uncovered substantial degrees of systematic misclassification of WIC participation. Using data from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES), we apply recently developed partial identification methodologies to jointly account for these two identification problems in a single framework. Under relatively weak assumptions, we find that WIC reduces the prevalence of child food insecurity by at least 5.5 percentage points and very low food security by at least 1.5 percentage points. (author abstract)

  • Individual Author: Swann, Christopher A.
    Reference Type: Report
    Year: 2011

    WIC participation among eligible children is significantly lower than participation among infants. This paper explores possible explanations for the decline in participation including the need for recertification and changes in family composition. Discrete time hazard rate models are used to study the timing of exit from the WIC program for children who participate as infants. The models are estimated using the 2004 Survey of Income and Program Participation. The results suggest that the risk of exit from the WIC program is higher in recertification months than other months and for families with more children in the age range for WIC eligibility. Additionally, comparisons to results obtained from the 2001 SIPP suggest that changes in the interviewing methodology introduced in the 2004 SIPP reduced the magnitude of seam bias in WIC spells. (author abstract)

    WIC participation among eligible children is significantly lower than participation among infants. This paper explores possible explanations for the decline in participation including the need for recertification and changes in family composition. Discrete time hazard rate models are used to study the timing of exit from the WIC program for children who participate as infants. The models are estimated using the 2004 Survey of Income and Program Participation. The results suggest that the risk of exit from the WIC program is higher in recertification months than other months and for families with more children in the age range for WIC eligibility. Additionally, comparisons to results obtained from the 2001 SIPP suggest that changes in the interviewing methodology introduced in the 2004 SIPP reduced the magnitude of seam bias in WIC spells. (author abstract)

  • Individual Author: U.S. Congress
    Reference Type: Statute
    Year: 2010

    This statute authorized funding and set policies for Federal child nutrition programs, such as the National School Lunch Program, the School Breakfast Program, the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants and Children (WIC), the Summer Food Service Program, and the Child and Adult Care Food Program. 

    Public Law No. 111-296 (2010).

     

    This statute authorized funding and set policies for Federal child nutrition programs, such as the National School Lunch Program, the School Breakfast Program, the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants and Children (WIC), the Summer Food Service Program, and the Child and Adult Care Food Program. 

    Public Law No. 111-296 (2010).

     

  • Individual Author: Slater, Maya Rossin
    Reference Type: Journal Article
    Year: 2013

    A large body of evidence indicates that conditions in-utero and health at birth matter for individuals' long-run outcomes, suggesting potential value in programs aimed at pregnant women and young children. This paper uses a novel identification strategy and data from birth and administrative records over 2005–2009 to provide causal estimates of the effects of geographic access to the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC). My empirical approach uses within-ZIP-code variation in WIC clinic presence together with maternal fixed effects, and accounts for the potential endogeneity of mobility, gestational-age bias, and measurement error in gestation. I find that access to WIC increases food benefit take-up, pregnancy weight gain, birth weight, and the probability of breastfeeding initiation at the time of hospital discharge. The estimated effects are strongest for mothers with a high school education or less, who are most likely eligible for WIC services. (author abstract)

    A large body of evidence indicates that conditions in-utero and health at birth matter for individuals' long-run outcomes, suggesting potential value in programs aimed at pregnant women and young children. This paper uses a novel identification strategy and data from birth and administrative records over 2005–2009 to provide causal estimates of the effects of geographic access to the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC). My empirical approach uses within-ZIP-code variation in WIC clinic presence together with maternal fixed effects, and accounts for the potential endogeneity of mobility, gestational-age bias, and measurement error in gestation. I find that access to WIC increases food benefit take-up, pregnancy weight gain, birth weight, and the probability of breastfeeding initiation at the time of hospital discharge. The estimated effects are strongest for mothers with a high school education or less, who are most likely eligible for WIC services. (author abstract)

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