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ERIC Number: EJ772846
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2003
Pages: 29
Abstractor: Author
Reference Count: 46
ISSN: ISSN-0276-8739
Welfare Reforms, Family Resources, and Child Maltreatment
Paxson, Christina; Waldfogel, Jane
Journal of Policy Analysis and Management, v22 n1 p85-113 Win 2003
This paper examines the impact of welfare reforms on several measures of child maltreatment. The authors use state-level data from 1990 to 1998 to examine whether recent welfare reforms have increased or reduced the incidence of reported and substantiated cases of maltreatment, the incidence of specific types of substantiated maltreatment--physical abuse and neglect--and the number of children living in out-of-home care. The welfare reforms considered are the imposition of: family caps, lifetime limits, work requirements, sanctions for non-compliance, and the restriction of welfare benefits to immigrants. How welfare benefit levels and changes in state Earned Income Tax Credit programs affect reports and substantiated cases of maltreatment are also considered. Evidence strongly indicates that reductions in states' welfare benefit levels increase the number of children in out-of-home care, and some evidence indicates that strict lifetime welfare limits and tougher sanctions for noncompliance are related to higher levels of substantiated maltreatment. The evidence on family caps is mixed: family caps appear to be associated with fewer instances of substantiated maltreatment, but more children in out-of-home care. Because most of the welfare reforms examined have been in effect for only a short time, these results should be considered preliminary. Overall, however, they provide some evidence that the recent welfare reforms in the United States may have increased child maltreatment. (Contains 7 tables, 3 figures and 13 footnotes.)
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: United States
Identifiers - Laws, Policies, & Programs: Earned Income Tax Credit