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Low income families' utilization of the Federal “Safety Net”: Individual and state-level predictors of TANF and Food Stamp receipt

  • Purtell, Kelly M.
  • Gershoff, Elizabeth T.
  • Aber, J. Lawrence
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    Two of the primary programs through which the federal government provides benefits to low income families are the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) program and the Food Stamp program. However, many eligible low income families do not actually receive these benefits. We combined state-level policy data with rich data on a national sample of low income families to investigate family and state-level predictors of TANF and Food Stamp receipt. Our findings indicate: 1) families experiencing more economic hardship and health challenges are more likely to receive benefits, and 2) states' coverage is associated with families' receipt of TANF, but not Food Stamps. Implications for policy and research are discussed.

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    Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Children and Youth Services Review.

    Volume (Year): 34 (2012)
    Issue (Month): 4 ()
    Pages: 713-724

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    Handle: RePEc:eee:cysrev:v:34:y:2012:i:4:p:713-724
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    1. Rebecca M. Blank & Patricia Ruggles, 1996. "When Do Women Use Aid to Families with Dependent Children and Food Stamps? The Dynamics of Eligibility Versus Participation," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 31(1), pages 57-89.
    2. repec:mpr:mprres:4507 is not listed on IDEAS
    3. Gundersen, Craig & Jolliffe, Dean & Tiehen, Laura, 2009. "The challenge of program evaluation: When increasing program participation decreases the relative well-being of participants," Food Policy, Elsevier, vol. 34(4), pages 367-376, August.
    4. Hanson, Kenneth & Andrews, Margaret S., 2009. "State Variations in the Food Stamp Benefit Reduction Rate for Earnings: Cross-Program Effects from TANF and SSI Cash Assistance," Economic Information Bulletin 58315, United States Department of Agriculture, Economic Research Service.
    5. Marcia K. Meyers & Janet C. Gornick & Laura R. Peck, 2001. "Packaging Support for Low-Income Families: Policy Variation across the United States," Journal of Policy Analysis and Management, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 20(3), pages 457-483.
    6. Marianne P. Bitler & Jonah B. Gelbach & Hilary W. Hoynes, 2003. "Welfare Reform and Children's Living Arrangements," Working Papers 111, RAND Corporation Publications Department.
    7. Dunifon, Rachel & Hynes, Kathryn & Peters, H. Elizabeth, 2006. "Welfare reform and child well-being," Children and Youth Services Review, Elsevier, vol. 28(11), pages 1273-1292, November.
    8. Gregory Acs & Katherin Ross Phillips & Sandi Nelson, 2005. "The Road Not Taken? Changes in Welfare Entry During the 1990s," Social Science Quarterly, Southwestern Social Science Association, vol. 86(s1), pages 1060-1079.
    9. Nord, Mark, 2005. "Measuring U.S. Household Food Security," Amber Waves, United States Department of Agriculture, Economic Research Service, April.
    10. Rebecca M. Blank, 2002. "Evaluating Welfare Reform in the United States," NBER Working Papers 8983, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    11. Bowen Garrett & Sherry Glied, 2000. "Does state AFDC generosity affect child SSI participation?," Journal of Policy Analysis and Management, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 19(2), pages 275-295.
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