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Insuring rural America: Health insurance challenges and opportunities

Individual Author: 
Mueller, Keith J.
Alfero, Charlie
Coburn, Andrew F.
Lundblad, Jennifer P.
MacKinney, A. Clinton
McBride, Timothy D.
Barker, Abigail

This paper discusses the realities and challenges of designing a market structure that will result in affordable health insurance being offered in rural markets, and reviews the rural implications of policies affecting rural health insurance markets and health systems. (Edited author introduction)


Exploring differences in employment between household and establishment data

Individual Author: 
Abraham, Katharine G.
Haltiwanger, John
Sandusky, Kristin
Spletzer, James R.

Using a large data set that links individual Current Population Survey (CPS) records to employer-reported administrative data, we document substantial discrepancies in basic measures of employment status that persist even after controlling for known definitional differences between the two data sources.

Poverty in childhood increases risk of poor health in adulthood

Individual Author: 
Hostinar, Camelia
Ross, Kharah M.
Chen, Edith
Miller, Gregory E.

A quarter of the world’s population suffer from metabolic syndrome (MetS), a cluster of conditions that increase the risk of heart disease, stroke, and diabetes. MetS is particularly common among people of low socioeconomic status (SES). When we examined the relative roles of early-life SES and current SES in explaining MetS risk, we found that low early-life SES contributed to an 83% greater risk of MetS later on.

Improving skills through America’s workforce development system

Individual Author: 
Bauman, Kevin
Christensen, Cody

To address these labor market challenges, many have turned to America’s workforce development system. Recent efforts from Congress and the White House confirm that policymakers are serious about expanding job-training opportunities. But even with the heightened focus, a shockingly small percentage of individuals leveraging the workforce system combine available Department of Labor training funds with money from other federal and state programs—despite that many more might qualify for additional aid.

Behavioral health improvements over time among adults in families experiencing homelessness

Individual Author: 
Shinn, Marybeth
Gubits, Daniel
Dunton, Lauren

The Homeless Families Research Briefs project, conducted by Abt Associates, is producing a series of research briefs on issues related to the well-being and economic self-sufficiency of families and children experiencing homelessness. Using data collected from the Department of Housing and Urban Development’s (HUD) Family Options Study, these briefs build on the data and analysis already being conducted for HUD to answer additional questions of interest to HHS. 

Supporting family child care and quality improvement: Findings from an exploratory survey of Illinois child care resource and referral agency staff

Individual Author: 
Bromer, Juliet
Weaver, Corinne

Improved quality in home-based child care (family child care and family, friend, and neighbor care) is increasingly recognized as a vital component of early care and education service systems in the U.S. and abroad and is a target of recent federal and state policy initiatives in the U.S. This article presents data from a statewide survey of 73 child care resource and referral specialists across Illinois who work with family child care providers on a regular basis through home visiting, training, and technical assistance.

Training for success: A policy to expand apprenticeships in the United States

Individual Author: 
Olinsky, Ben
Steinberg, Sarah Ayres

Apprenticeships are not a familiar concept to many Americans, but expanding the use of this highly effective training model can help our nation meet the demand for skilled workers, create pathways to well-paying careers for unemployed young workers, and give American businesses a competitive edge in the global marketplace. Apprenticeships have been a tried and true method of educating and training workers since the Middle Ages, and they continue to enhance productivity and boost workers’ earnings in many countries around the world today.

Thresholds in the association between child care quality and child outcomes in rural preschool children

Individual Author: 
Burchinal, Margaret
Vernon-Feagans, Lynne
Vitiello, Virginia
Greenberg, Mark
The Family Life Project Key Investigators

This study examined whether a minimum level of preschool quality (threshold) is needed in order for a relationship to exist between preschool quality and children's academic, behavioral, and working memory in a sample of children from low-wealth rural communities where quality child care has been found to be lower than more urban communities. Participants included 849 children from two high-poverty, rural regions. Preschool quality was rated using the CLASS observational measure.

The apprenticeship wage and participation gap

Individual Author: 
Hanks, Angela
McGrew, Annie
Zessoules, Daniella

The analysis in this issue brief examines apprenticeship programs over the past decade—from fiscal year 2008 through 2017—to observe gaps in participation and wages among women and people of color. In general, it finds that women remain deeply underrepresented in apprenticeship programs and that wages among women and black or African American apprentices are much lower than those of other apprentices. Even though these programs are intended and have the potential to develop the U.S.

Understanding the minimum wage: Implications for workers, employers, and communities PowerPoint

Individual Author: 
Kendall, Jessica
Nadeau, Lou
Acs, Gregory
Neumark, David

The Self-Sufficiency Research Clearinghouse (SSRC) sponsored a webinar, Understanding the Minimum Wage: Implications for Workers, Employers, and Communities, on August 9, 2018, 2:00-3:30pm EDT. The webinar focused on how changes in the minimum wage affect individuals, families, employers and the economy. Today, the U.S. economy continues to grow and the unemployment rate remains low. Wage growth, however, remains slow for much of the labor force. The federal minimum wage has remained at $7.25 an hour since 2009.