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Welfare Reform on the Web (March 2000): Social Security - Overseas

CO-ORDINATION OF THE SOCIAL SECURITY SYSTEMS AND THE ACCESSION OF CENTRAL AND EASTERN EUROPEAN COUNTRIES TO THE EUROPEAN UNION

Y. Jorens, B. Schulte and C. Schumacher

European Journal of Social Security, vol. 1, 1999, p. 269-282

Explains the role of the Consensus programme in helping Central and Eastern European countries to reform their social security systems to facilitate their accession to the EU.

HOW STATES CAN MAKE WORK PAY

A. P. Carnevale and K. Sylvester

Policy and Practice of Public Human Services, vol. 57, Dec. 1999, p. 38-44

In 1998, an estimated 1.5 million people who were receiving welfare in 1997 found work. While finding jobs has been fairly easy, making work pay has proved more difficult. States and communities are now engaging in new partnerships and strategies to help former welfare recipients enroll in targeted education and training to enable them to raise their earnings.

INDEPENDENT WORKERS, DEPENDABLE MOTHERS: DISCOURSE, RESISTANCE AND AFDC WORKFARE PROGRAMS

D. L. Little

Social politics, vol. 6, 1999, p. 161-202

In the late 1980s the United States demanded that all women receiving federal welfare payments make efforts to move off of welfare and into paid work. Case study shows how, at local level, in complex interactions between women receiving welfare and staff walking the tightrope between empathy for their clients' family situations and the institutional demand to change their clients from mothers into wokers, a discourse that values caregiving as work actually gives poor welfare recipients some space within which to resist the harsher demands of workfare programmes.

SOCIAL SECURITY IN AUSTRALIA AND NEW ZEALAND: MEANS-TESTED OR JUST MEAN?

P. Saunders

Social Policy and Administration, vol. 33, 1999, p. 493-515

Paper analyses how targeting of benefits has been used in each country as a way of illustrating the different approaches adopted. Attention is focused on how the retirement income systems of the two countries illustrate on increasing policy divergence, with the planned Australian transition to a "multi-pillar" approach in contrast to the constant reform of New Zealand superannuation. Household data on the pattern of receipt of transfer incomes and their impact on the distribution of income are then used to explore the impact of targeting since the early 1980s. This analysis suggests that targeting has had a far smaller impact on income inequality in both countries than is often claimed.

SOCIAL SECURITY IN A RAPIDLY CHANGING ENVIRONMENT: THE CASE OF THE POST-COMMUNIST TRANSFORMATION

G. Faith

Social Policy and Administration, vol. 33, 1999, p. 416-436

Overcoming economic crises and implementing institutional change in Central and Eastern Europe and the former Soviet Union have been greatly facilitated by pre-existing social security system, although adaptations to the new circumstances have been necessary. Paper offers a review of these adjustments and the various strategies that have been employed for mitigating losses in income and in social cohesion with the market reforms.

SOURCES OF INCOME FOR LONE MOTHER FAMILIES: POLICY CHANGES IN BRITAIN AND THE NETHERLANDS AND THE EXPERIENCES OF DIVORCED WOMEN

A. van Drenth, T. Knijn and J. Lewis

Journal of Social Policy, vol. 28, 1999, p. 619-641

Article reviews the structure and characteristics of lone motherhood in the two countries and the nature of recent policy changes involving the redefinition of lone mothers as workers rather than as mothers. It then reports the findings of an exploratory qualitative study of divorced mothers in both countries. The evidence from the interviews reveals the strength of the commitment women in both countries make to care and shows the difficulties they face in combining paid and unpaid work. This makes the change to treating lone mothers as workers rather than mothers unrealistic.

TARGETING SOCIAL EXPENDITURE IN NEW ZEALAND: AN EVALUATION OF THE CURRENT POLICY REGIME.

J. Boston

Social Policy and Administration, vol. 33, 1999, p. 516-533

Provides a brief account of how social expenditure in New Zealand has been targeted (ie means-tested) since the late nineteenth century, and assesses the strengths and weaknesses of the current targeting regimes.

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