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Welfare Reform on the Web (March 2001): Social Security - Overseas

ADVOCACY BE NOT FORSAKEN: RETROSPECTIVE LESSONS FROM WELFARE REFORM

V. Lens and M. Gibelman

Families in Society, vol.81, 2000, p.611-620

Welfare reform in the US (in which Aid to Families with Dependent Children was abolished in 1996 and replaced by Temporary Assistance to Needy Families) is presented as a case example of both a failed opportunity to influence the course of public debate and the potential benefits of advocacy when it is systematically applied and integrated as part of an overall organisational approach to services. General principles are drawn from the case study as they apply to advocacy practice with vulnerable populations.

ENDING WELFARE AS WE KNOW IT (AGAIN): WELFARE STATE RETRENCHMENT 1989-1995

Y. Zylan and S.A. Soule

Social Forces, vol.79, 2000, p.623-652

Aid to Families with Dependent Children (AFDC) has been a politically contentious programme of social provision since the 1950s when states initiated the first effort to reform the programme and reduce costs through punitive eligibility requirements. A similar reform wave emerged in the late 1980s, as states again sought to contract social provision by enacting dramatic revisions in their AFDC programmes. However, even as the content of reforms passed in the first wave was similar to the content of reforms passed during the second wave, different states and a different party were in the forefront of innovation during each wave. However the mechanisms driving retrenchment remained fundamentally the same: partisan politics, racial conflict and the rapid diffusion of the reforms once they had begun to be pursued.

ENDING WELFARE THROUGH WORK FIRST: MANAGER AND CLIENT VIEWS

S.K. Danziger and K.S. Seefeldt

Families in Society, vol.81, 2000, p.593-604

Michigan adopted a Work First model to move welfare recipients quickly into employment. Local programme managers expressed general support for this labour force attachment model, but raised concerns about how well the model worked in principle and in practice. Their concerns reflected internal programme limitations, client deficiencies and the need for broader interventions (e.g. childcare services or educational opportunities). Clients in the Women's Employment Study also gave the programmes mixed appraisals, noting that while the programme helped them to find work, it was often frustrating and a waste of time.

 

FINANCIAL INCENTIVES AND WELFARE REFORM IN THE UNITED STATES

P.K. Robins, C. Michalopoulos and E. Pan

Journal of Policy Analysis and Management, vol.20, 2001, p.129-149

Paper uses a microsimulation model to ask whether welfare recipients in the United States would work full-time if offered an earnings supplement conditional on full-time employment rather than the "enhanced earnings disregards" currently being used by many states. The simulations suggest that earnings supplements would increase full-time employment, with little additional cash transfer cost to the government.

HOW TO SIMPLIFY THE CO-ORDINATION OF SOCIAL SECURITY

E. Eichenhofer

European Journal of Social Security, vol.2, 2000, p.231-240

In the debate on social security co-ordination in the EU, three distinct approaches to simplification can be identified. The first of these is piecemeal reform. The second is the idea that a European statute on social security for migrants should replace the trend towards co-ordination. The third is based on the belief that simplification should mean that co-ordination rules are reduced to mere elementary principles.

WELFARE WORK EXPERIENCE AND ECONOMIC SELF-SUFFICIENCY

S. Loeb and M. Corcoran

Journal of Policy Analysis and Management, vol.20, 2001, p.1-20

The potential of former AFDC recipients to earn a living wage is central to the success of welfare-to-work programmes. Previous studies have shown that welfare recipients see little growth in their wages over time. Paper estimates how wages grew with work experience between 1978 and 1992 for a national sample of women from the National Longitudinal Survey of Youth. Compares women who never received benefits with both short and long term recipients to see to what extent the rates of wage growth with work experience differ. Results showed that AFDC recipients wages grew slowly with age because recipients accumulated less work experience than other women and often worked part-time.