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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: Scherpf, Erik
    Reference Type: Report
    Year: 2013

    This study investigates young adults’ first experience with the Supplementary Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), examining the determinants of first program entry and exit. It makes use of the National Longitudinal Survey of Youth 1997 cohort (NLSY97), which follows respondents from adolescence into adulthood. This study estimates discrete-time hazard models of program entry and exit with and without unobserved heterogeneity. Unobserved heterogeneity is modeled using both a parametric approach, in which a gamma distribution is assumed, and a non-parametric approach with two mass points. The results are broadly consistent across models, indicating that, for the cohort in this study, accounting for unobserved heterogeneity does not substantially alter the results from a basic discrete-time hazard model. The results show that expanded categorical eligibility increased the hazard of SNAP entry in the six years following high school, while the absence of vehicle exclusions decreased the entry hazard. For program exit, however, state SNAP policies had no statistically significant...

    This study investigates young adults’ first experience with the Supplementary Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), examining the determinants of first program entry and exit. It makes use of the National Longitudinal Survey of Youth 1997 cohort (NLSY97), which follows respondents from adolescence into adulthood. This study estimates discrete-time hazard models of program entry and exit with and without unobserved heterogeneity. Unobserved heterogeneity is modeled using both a parametric approach, in which a gamma distribution is assumed, and a non-parametric approach with two mass points. The results are broadly consistent across models, indicating that, for the cohort in this study, accounting for unobserved heterogeneity does not substantially alter the results from a basic discrete-time hazard model. The results show that expanded categorical eligibility increased the hazard of SNAP entry in the six years following high school, while the absence of vehicle exclusions decreased the entry hazard. For program exit, however, state SNAP policies had no statistically significant effect. The recent birth of a child, prior participation in WIC and low educational attainment were each strongly associated with an increased “risk” of SNAP entry, and decreased “risk” of exit. Somewhat, surprisingly, higher unemployment rates in the local labor market were not significantly associated with higher entry risk, but were strongly associated with a lower exit risk. (author abstract)

  • Individual Author: De Marco, Allison
    Reference Type: Report
    Year: 2012

    During the Great Recession the US experienced its longest and worst recession since the Great Depression, evidenced by high unemployment, unprecedented job losses, and long-term unemployment. Particularly hard hit, in North Carolina the unemployment rate remained higher for longer than the four previous recessions (NC Employment Security Commission, 2011). This study uses data from the North Carolina sample of the Family Life Project, a representative sample of predominantly low-income, rural families oversampled for African American and low income families, to examine how the economic downturn impacted residents’ employment in the rural South and how those conditions are related to economic strain and food insecurity. There is a comparative dearth of information available on rural poverty, however, it is critical to address these issues because of disproportionate rates of poverty and limited access to services in low wealth, rural communities. We use NC data from the 36-month home visit, collected 7/06 – 10/07, to capture conditions prior to the recession and the 58-month home...

    During the Great Recession the US experienced its longest and worst recession since the Great Depression, evidenced by high unemployment, unprecedented job losses, and long-term unemployment. Particularly hard hit, in North Carolina the unemployment rate remained higher for longer than the four previous recessions (NC Employment Security Commission, 2011). This study uses data from the North Carolina sample of the Family Life Project, a representative sample of predominantly low-income, rural families oversampled for African American and low income families, to examine how the economic downturn impacted residents’ employment in the rural South and how those conditions are related to economic strain and food insecurity. There is a comparative dearth of information available on rural poverty, however, it is critical to address these issues because of disproportionate rates of poverty and limited access to services in low wealth, rural communities. We use NC data from the 36-month home visit, collected 7/06 – 10/07, to capture conditions prior to the recession and the 58-month home visit, collected 7/08 – 12/09, to capture conditions during the recession. During the recession 36% of these NC families reported a major employment change (starting/stopping a job, major changes in responsibilities, such as a promotion/demotion, significant change in hours); 23.5% went from working a standard to a nonstandard shift (evening, night, and rotating); while over 10% saw their employment become less stable, moving from permanent to temporary jobs. In regression analysis, maternal education and rurality predicted work distress. Work distress was related to increased economic strain and lead to increased use TANF, SNAP, and Unemployment Insurance. Social support and SNAP use buffered experiences of food insecurity. This knowledge will enable policy-makers to make more informed decisions about how to modify policies and programs to better match the situations present in these communities.  (author abstract)

  • Individual Author: Gibson, Diane M.
    Reference Type: Report
    Year: 2012

    Using a sample of low-income adults, this project will examine whether the availability of food retail and food service establishments in a person’s neighborhood of residence (a person’s “neighborhood food environment”) was associated with the types of establishments where the person purchased food, the person’s daily energy intake, weight status, and weight-related comorbidities, and will consider whether these associations differed for Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program or SNAP (formerly Food Stamp Program or FSP) participants compared to eligible nonparticipants. The results of this project will offer insight into whether the neighborhood food environment influences how food spending is allocated across types of food establishments and whether changing the allocation of food spending across types of food establishments in turn leads to differences in energy intake, weight status, and weight-related comorbidities for low-income individuals, SNAP participants, and eligible nonparticipants. (author abstract)

    Using a sample of low-income adults, this project will examine whether the availability of food retail and food service establishments in a person’s neighborhood of residence (a person’s “neighborhood food environment”) was associated with the types of establishments where the person purchased food, the person’s daily energy intake, weight status, and weight-related comorbidities, and will consider whether these associations differed for Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program or SNAP (formerly Food Stamp Program or FSP) participants compared to eligible nonparticipants. The results of this project will offer insight into whether the neighborhood food environment influences how food spending is allocated across types of food establishments and whether changing the allocation of food spending across types of food establishments in turn leads to differences in energy intake, weight status, and weight-related comorbidities for low-income individuals, SNAP participants, and eligible nonparticipants. (author abstract)

  • Individual Author: Dickert-Conlin, Stacy; Fitzpatrick, Katie; Tiehen, Laura
    Reference Type: Report
    Year: 2012

    In 2004 the U.S. Department of Agriculture began a large-scale advertising campaign to increase participation in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) by increasing awareness about the program. Despite this and other large-scale outreach efforts for federal programs targeted at eligible nonparticipants, the role of information in program participation is not well established. Paying careful attention to the potential endogeneity of advertising placement, we use variation over time and within states to estimate the effect of the advertising on caseloads, applications, approved applications, and denied applications. We find that radio advertisements are positively correlated with county-level caseloads in a sample that represents nearly every U.S. county. Six months after radio advertising in a county, the number of individuals receiving SNAP is 2 to 3 percent higher. With a smaller sample of counties on SNAP applications, approvals, and denials, we find limited evidence that SNAP is positively correlated with overall applications. However, approved applications are...

    In 2004 the U.S. Department of Agriculture began a large-scale advertising campaign to increase participation in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) by increasing awareness about the program. Despite this and other large-scale outreach efforts for federal programs targeted at eligible nonparticipants, the role of information in program participation is not well established. Paying careful attention to the potential endogeneity of advertising placement, we use variation over time and within states to estimate the effect of the advertising on caseloads, applications, approved applications, and denied applications. We find that radio advertisements are positively correlated with county-level caseloads in a sample that represents nearly every U.S. county. Six months after radio advertising in a county, the number of individuals receiving SNAP is 2 to 3 percent higher. With a smaller sample of counties on SNAP applications, approvals, and denials, we find limited evidence that SNAP is positively correlated with overall applications. However, approved applications are not higher following radio advertisement exposure and denied applications increase. One way to reconcile the fact that caseloads are higher but new enrollments are not is that increased information from the advertising campaign may reduce exits from the program. (author abstract)

  • Individual Author: Kreider, Brent; Pepper, John V.; Gundersen, Craig; Jolliffe, Dean
    Reference Type: Journal Article
    Year: 2012

    The literature assessing the efficacy of the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), formerly known as the Food Stamp Program, has long puzzled over positive associations between SNAP receipt and various undesirable health outcomes such as food insecurity. Assessing the causal impacts of SNAP, however, is hampered by two key identification problems: endogenous selection into participation and extensive systematic underreporting of participation status. Using data from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES), we extend partial identification bounding methods to account for these two identification problems in a single unifying framework. Specifically, we derive informative bounds on the average treatment effect (ATE) of SNAP on child food insecurity, poor general health, obesity, and anemia across a range of different assumptions used to address the selection and classification error problems. In particular, to address the selection problem, we apply relatively weak nonparametric assumptions on the latent outcomes, selected treatments, and observed...

    The literature assessing the efficacy of the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), formerly known as the Food Stamp Program, has long puzzled over positive associations between SNAP receipt and various undesirable health outcomes such as food insecurity. Assessing the causal impacts of SNAP, however, is hampered by two key identification problems: endogenous selection into participation and extensive systematic underreporting of participation status. Using data from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES), we extend partial identification bounding methods to account for these two identification problems in a single unifying framework. Specifically, we derive informative bounds on the average treatment effect (ATE) of SNAP on child food insecurity, poor general health, obesity, and anemia across a range of different assumptions used to address the selection and classification error problems. In particular, to address the selection problem, we apply relatively weak nonparametric assumptions on the latent outcomes, selected treatments, and observed covariates. To address the classification error problem, we formalize a new approach that uses auxiliary administrative data on the size of the SNAP caseload to restrict the magnitudes and patterns of SNAP reporting errors. Layering successively stronger assumptions, an objective of our analysis is to make transparent how the strength of the conclusions varies with the strength of the identifying assumptions. Under the weakest restrictions, there is substantial ambiguity; we cannot rule out the possibility that SNAP increases or decreases poor health. Under stronger but plausible assumptions used to address the selection and classification error problems, we find that commonly cited relationships between SNAP and poor health outcomes provide a misleading picture about the true impacts of the program. Our tightest bounds identify favorable impacts of SNAP on child health. (author abstract)

    This article is based on a working paper published by the National Poverty Center.

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