ERIC Number: ED354375
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1993-Mar
Reference Count: N/A
Jobs for JOBS: Toward a Work-Based Welfare System. Occasional Paper 1993-1.
Levitan, Sar A.; Gallo, Frank
The Job Opportunities and Basic Skills (JOBS) program, a component of the 1988 Family Support Act, emphasizes education and occupational training for welfare recipients, but it has not provided sufficient corrective measures to promote work among recipients of Aid for Families with Dependent Children (AFDC). The most serious deficiency of JOBS is its failure to create jobs for recipients unable to find work in the regular economy. JOBS permits subsidized employment, but fewer than five percent of enrollees have been placed in such jobs, and public service employment is banned. Unless an increasing proportion of recipients work, public tolerance of AFDC will continue to diminish. Increased funding for JOBS is needed to enroll more AFDC recipients, and more vigorous monitoring of program outcomes should be carried out. At the same time, the federal government should address the needs of the working poor, so that it is not more beneficial to receive AFDC than to work. Work-related assistance is also probably less effective than preventive measures such as birth control. A combination of the following measures is needed to achieve true welfare reform: (1) a 1-year limit on AFDC recipiency for able-bodied individuals, with a right to a publicly subsidized job for recipients unable to find work in the regular economy; (2) provision of free family planning services and devices to adults who cannot afford them; (3) more aggressive efforts to secure child support payments from absent parents and the provision of subsidized jobs to unemployed parents who do not meet their obligations; (4) expanded education, training, and transportation for JOBS participants; and (5) assistance to poor workers by restoring the minimum wage to its value in the 1970s, adjusting the earned income tax credit for family size and extending it to childless workers, expanding access to health insurance and child care, and providing publicly subsidized jobs to the long-term unemployed. (KC)
Publication Type: Opinion Papers
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: Ford Foundation, New York, NY.
Authoring Institution: George Washington Univ., Washington, DC. Center for Social Policy Studies.