Welfare Reform Essay Research Paper Welfare Reform — страница 4

  • Просмотров 359
  • Скачиваний 5
  • Размер файла 19

the PRWORA does not require this program, it is a state option (Sherman et al., 1998). Enforcing such policies underlines the double standards applied to welfare recipients by the state in contrast to other recipients of government aid (like tax credits). Studies report, TANF recipients have 1.9 children, about the same as the national average ( ). It is assumed that failing to increase welfare payments for an additional child, $67 per month on average, is a sufficient incentive to prevent further pregnancies (Rose 2000). Repeated studies show no correlation between benefit levels and women’s choice to have children. States providing relatively higher benefits do not show higher birth rates among recipients (Rose 2000). More importantly the implication of incentives is also

punitive. Non-welfare families do receive a premium for additional children, in the form of a $2,450 tax deduction per child and up to $ in childcare reimbursement annually. However, society does not label the women receiving these “incentives” for having additional children to decrease their taxable income. Considering the actual amount of increase of benefits for an additional child dose not support claims as incentive for women receiving welfare, therefore we must look deeper to reveal other possible motivations for this type of policy. “Surveys show that racial attitudes are the most important reason behind white opposition to welfare programs” (Gilens p. 593). The history of AFDC shows repeated attempts to exclude African Americans through morality requirements.

Although black represent only 37% of welfare recipients, perceptions of black mothers dominate whites’ evaluations of welfare and their preferences with regard to welfare spending (p. 601). The “welfare mother experiment”, conducted by Gilens in 1996, asked respondents their impression of a welfare recipient described as either black or white woman in her early 30s, who has a ten year old child, and who has been on welfare for the past year. Respondents were asked two specific questions, “how likely is it that the woman described will try hard to find a job, and “how likely is it that she will have more children to get larger welfare check” (Gilens 1996). Analysis of the responses showed a significant correlation between race and negative views of welfare recipients.

“The results indicate that the influence of beliefs about welfare mothers is about twice as strong when she is black than when she is white.” In Conclusion Whether out of willful disregard or real misunderstanding, states are failing to fulfill their legal obligations to the poor. According to a report in 1988 put out by the Mississippi Low Income Child Care Initiative and Congregations for Children, 90 percent of the Mississippi children eligible for childcare vouchers do not receive them ( ). It is also estimated 675,000 low-income people in 1997 became uninsured as a result of welfare reform, 62% of those were children who should have never been denied their insurance (Sherman et al., 1998). Welfare reforms affects all poor women, but given the influence of race, class,

and gender in current society it appears to be the mythical information driving such reform bills. Various “incentatives” states are offered increase the probability that acutal spending in the supporting programs will be reduced. It is my opinion, considering the recorded facts, the real blame benefit for such reform bills clearly should be placed upon government acting on the opportunity to capitalize on stereotypes for economic gain. The real information that people need isn’t coming from the system. And why should it? The object of the game is to get as many people off welfare as possible. So why should they share the rules of the game? Statistics and non-profit studies make evident the states unwillingness to spend necessary money for successful Despite premature

claims of victory, a recent investigation by the Children’s Defense Fund and National Coalition for the Homelessness found welfare reform to be responsible for extreme poverty growing among children, especially those in female-headed households (Sherman et al., 1998). This non-profit investigation recommended Bibliography References Cahn, Naomi, R. 1997. Representing race outside of explicitly racialized contexts. Michigan Law Review. 95 (February):965-1004. Gilens, Martin. 1996. “Race Coding” and white opposition to welfare. American Political Science Review. 90 (September):593-612. Rose, Nancy E. 2000. Scapegoating Poor Women: An Analysis of Welfare Reform. Journal of Economic Issues. 34 (March):143 Sherman, Arloc, Cheryl Amey, Barbara Duffield, Nancy Ebb, and Deborah