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Reexamining the Impact of Family Planning Programs on U.S. Fertility: Evidence from the War on Poverty and the Early Years of Title X

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  • Martha J. Bailey

Abstract

Almost 50 years after domestic U.S. family planning programs began, their effects on childbearing remain controversial. Using the county-level roll-out of these programs from 1964 to 1973, this paper reevaluates their shorter- and longer-term effects on U.S. fertility rates. I find that the introduction of family planning is associated with significant and persistent reductions in fertility driven both by falling completed childbearing and childbearing delay. Although federally-funded family planning accounted for a small portion of the post-baby boom U.S. fertility decline, the estimates imply that they reduced childbearing among poor women by 21 to 29 percent.

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Paper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 17343.

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Date of creation: Aug 2011
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Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:17343

Note: CH DAE LS
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  1. Martha J. Bailey, 2010. ""Momma's Got the Pill": How Anthony Comstock and Griswold v. Connecticut Shaped US Childbearing," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 100(1), pages 98-129, March.
  2. Ludwig, Jens & Miller, Douglas L., 2006. "Does Head Start Improve Children's Life Chances? Evidence from a Regression Discontinuity Design," IZA Discussion Papers 2111, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  3. Levine, Phillip B. & Trainor, Amy B. & Zimmerman, David J., 1996. "The effect of Medicaid abortion funding restrictions on abortions, pregnancies and births," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 15(5), pages 555-578, October.
  4. Jennifer M. Mellor, 1997. "The Effect of Family Planning Programs on the Fertility of Welfare Recipients: Evidence from Medicaid Claims," JCPR Working Papers 9, Northwestern University/University of Chicago Joint Center for Poverty Research.
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Cited by:
  1. Martha J. Bailey & Nicolas J. Duquette, 2014. "How Johnson Fought the War on Poverty: The Economics and Politics of Funding at the Office of Economic Opportunity," NBER Working Papers 19860, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.

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