ERIC Number: ED440206
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2000-Mar
Reference Count: N/A
Redirecting Welfare Policy toward Building Strong Families. Strengthening Families.
Sorensen, Elaine; Mincy, Ronald; Halpern, Ariel
The number of children living with a single mother has dramatically increased over the past two decades, and almost half of all single-mother families are headed by a never-married mother. A new family type has emerged in the United States, the fragile family. Evidence shows that fathers tend to be highly involved in the lives of their young children, but gradually drift away, leaving mothers alone to provide for their children. The U.S. income security system responds by providing services to single mothers and their children, but it does little to prevent the erosion of paternal involvement with poor children. With the reauthorization of Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF), Congress should consider whether any distinction between single and two-parent families is warranted within TANF. Congress should also consider encouraging states to broaden their eligibility criteria within TANF for noncash assistance and case management to include all types of poor families, including noncustodial parents. Congress should also build on the high level of parental involvement that occurs when poor children are young and establish a program that helps both poor mothers and fathers overcome barriers that they face starting together. (SLD)
Descriptors: Family Programs, Fathers, Federal Aid, One Parent Family, Public Policy, Welfare Reform, Welfare Services
Urban Institute, 2100 M Street, N.W., Washington, DC 20037. Tel: 202-833-7200; Fax: 202-429-0687; e-mail: email@example.com. For full text: http://www.urban.org/family/sf_3.html.
Publication Type: Opinion Papers
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: Mott (C.S.) Foundation, Flint, MI.
Authoring Institution: Urban Inst., Washington, DC.
Identifiers - Laws, Policies, & Programs: Temporary Assistance for Needy Families