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The Role of Race and Birth Place in Welfare Usage among Comparable Women: Evidence from the U.S

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Listed:
  • Uwaifo Oyelere, Ruth

    () (Morehouse College)

  • Oyolola, Maharouf

    () (African Population and Health Research Center (APHRC))

Abstract

There is evidence that women are more likely to live in poverty than men. Given the fact that the poor are more likely to use welfare, it becomes useful to consider welfare usage among women. A-priori welfare programs are set up in such a way that welfare usage should be based primarily on economic needs and health concerns. However, it is possible that an individual’s experiences could affect their perception and preferences for using government assistance. In this scenario, differences in welfare usage will exist for individuals with similar characteristics but different experiences. We explore this possibility among women and investigate if race/ethnicity and birthplace still have a role to play in the decision to use welfare even after controlling for income, health and other demographic factors like employment. We find that race does not matter for welfare usage among comparable women. In addition, we do not find any significant differences in welfare usage among women based on birthplace – suggesting that comparable naturalized and native born women share similar preference for welfare. The only exception is women born in U.S territories. Our results suggest that among comparable women, women born in U.S territories seem to be more inclined to welfare usage in comparison to U.S born White women.

Suggested Citation

  • Uwaifo Oyelere, Ruth & Oyolola, Maharouf, 2011. "The Role of Race and Birth Place in Welfare Usage among Comparable Women: Evidence from the U.S," IZA Discussion Papers 5668, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  • Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp5668
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Marianne Bitler & Jonah Gelbach & Hilary Hoynes & Madeline Zavodny, 2004. "The impact of welfare reform on marriage and divorce," Demography, Springer;Population Association of America (PAA), vol. 41(2), pages 213-236, May.
    2. Marianne Bitler & Jonah Gelbach & Hilary Hoynes & Madeline Zavodny, 2004. "The impact of welfare reform on marriage and divorce," Demography, Springer;Population Association of America (PAA), vol. 41(2), pages 213-236, May.
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    race; immigrants; women; welfare usage; black; welfare; birth place; ethnicity; immigrant status;

    JEL classification:

    • J2 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor
    • J10 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - General
    • J24 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Human Capital; Skills; Occupational Choice; Labor Productivity
    • J38 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Wages, Compensation, and Labor Costs - - - Public Policy
    • I21 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - Analysis of Education
    • O12 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Microeconomic Analyses of Economic Development
    • O15 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Economic Development: Human Resources; Human Development; Income Distribution; Migration

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