Welfare: Who Does It Benefit

What happens if someone was to lose their job? What happens if there is not enough money at the end of the month? What happens if someone does not have enough money to feed their children? Luckily, there is a program that can help these people that fit in these categories. The name of this program is called The Welfare Reform. Being on welfare is nothing to be ashamed of. Many people feel that welfare benefits the poor, but that is not true at all. Welfare benefits those who are in need of it. In today’s economy, millions of former CEOs, presidents of companies, and business owners are now suffering severe pay cuts.
Now, they may not be able support their families financially like they use to. They might have to turn to being on welfare to help their families. This example shows that welfare not only helps the less fortunate, but it helps everyone in need. My primary focus of this paper is to illustrate how welfare helps everyone, and it is nothing to be embarrassed about. Welfare Reform: The Untold Story was a very informative article about the use of the welfare reform. This article discussed the problems with the welfare legislation.
It talks about how some people are abusing the welfare system. Also, it talks about how the welfare system has helped other major programs. A program that has been helped by the Welfare Reform is the funding of child care. It talks about what prompted the need of the Welfare Reform. It provides data on how long people are usually on welfare. The article talks about how minimum wage, child support, and a rise in income tax credit have benefited the people on welfare. The article also explains why numerous people on welfare got off the program.

It talks about how welfare has affected teen pregnancy. Finally, it gives the reader the advantages and disadvantages brought by the Welfare Reform. Robert Cherry stated that, “But the strong economy and funding provisions of welfare legislation led almost all states to enhance child care funding, provide tax subsidies to supplement wages, and to fund educational initiatives” (Cherry 79). In this statement alone can answer my soul purpose of the paper. That purpose was does the Welfare Reform benefit the poor? This statement gives the answer as yes, but while doing so; the Welfare
Reform has helped millions of people who are not poor. Another great point Robert Cherry made was, “During the economic expansion, the vast majority of welfare leavers found paid employment” (Cherry 81). This explains, while the economy is doing great; there are numerous people that are on welfare who are getting off. To go a little further, if the economy is not doing well, this is what caused people to turn towards welfare. Once again, this has supported the idea that welfare does not just benefit the less fortunate. Has the Welfare Reform benefited the poor?
Yes, but while the reform was geared toward the people who fit the poor profile, however, it has benefited the very people who look down on welfare. Single working mothers are a group that does not fit the poor profile, but the Welfare Reform has helped them tremendously. Robert Cherry supported my claim by saying, “Today, if a single mother with two children earns $13,000, she qualifies for an earned income tax credit (EITC) of $4,000 at the federal level, and $900 at the state level in a number of states”(Cherry 81). With the tax credit, which is a part of the Welfare Reform; their yearly income has risen to over $ 17,000.
The book Evaluating Food Assistance Programs in an Era of Welfare Reform: Summary of a Workshop gives information that many Americans do not know about. The book talks about the different programs that are within the Welfare Reform. It also talks about the work requirements that come with being on welfare. It also discusses the funds that are set aside for welfare. To elaborate on the different programs, the book not only gives us the names of the program, but the book goes in detail pertaining to the programs. The book talks about the research that was needed, so that there could be improvements for welfare.
The editors discussed a program called the Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act. “PRWORA emphasizes welfare to work concept, including time limits for assistance, strong work requirements, a performance bonus to reward states for moving welfare recipients into jobs, and increased funding for child care” (Evaluating vii). This shows that welfare does not mean taking care of lazy people. It is also saying that the states would benefit from those on welfare. This program gears to help people work, and to take care of themselves, so that is why there is a limit for assistance.
The Food and Nutrition Service serves an enormous part to the Welfare Reform. The editors stated, “Today, the Food and Nutrition Service (FNS) of the U. S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) administers 15 food assistance programs. These programs feed one in six Americans, serving as a natural nutrition safety net for millions of children, working families, and elderly” (Evaluating 1). This material proves that people, who work still, need some assistance. It shows that this program feeds not only the less fortune, but it feeds working Americans also.
It also shows that welfare knows no upper, middle, or lower class, but it helps Americans as a whole. I know there has been a previous attempt to help people in need, but that did not work because how the money was distributed to the families. The editors supported my claim by saying, “The previous program, Aid to Families with Dependent Children (AFDC), provided cash assistance directly to children and their families based on need, income, resources, family size, and family structure” (Evaluating 1). The problem with this program was because the cash was given directly to the families.
This maybe the reason why many Americans started to believe welfare was a waste of money, and the money was not used for the right reasons. This also caused them to use stricter requirements, and caused PRWORA to come up with something else to replace the flaws. “PRWORA replaced AFDC with the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) program, which provides assistance and work opportunities to needy families by granting states the federal funds and wide flexibility to develop and implement their own welfare program” (Evaluating 1).
The article Welfare Reform and Family Expenditures: How Are Single Mothers Adapting to the New Welfare and Work Regime provided information that I did not know. The article talks about the public welfare. It also put a light on single parents, but mainly the focus is on single mothers. The article gives graphs that illustrate single mother families, which the mother only has, a high school diploma. The graph also showed what kind of income was expected, depending on the other levels of education. The article also displays the xpenses of the needs needed in everyday life. The article also gives the reader a descriptive and multivariate analysis about expenditures. The authors stated that, “According to the U. S. Census Bureau (nd), the poverty rate among children in single-mother families declined from 54 percent in 1993 to 43 percent in 2005. This decline is due part to the economic boom of the 1900s and in part to such other factors as changes in tax and transfers programs” (Welfare Reform 371). This shows that while the economy is doing well, the poverty rate drops.
This also shows that just because someone is living in a single parent home; it does not mean that they will be living inn poverty. I truly believe that the Welfare Reform does not encourage the welfare recipients to be on welfare. The authors supported my belief by saying, “A spate of policy changes in the 1990s shifted the focus of U. S. welfare policy from providing cash benefits for low-income single mothers to providing work incentives, and a range of supports for the working poor” (Welfare Reform 371).
The government knows that life can be hard, and that is why the government created the Welfare Reform. The government encourages people to work, and to look for jobs. That is why government is making the attempt to provide help for those who need it. However, there is another side to the story. Receivers of welfare as a child has a negative outcome on the money earned as adults. People believe that the more welfare a young male receives as a child, the lower the same boy income will be as an adult.
Living in a single-parent household while on welfare, the more likely a person is to have a criminal record. Also, many believe that children in households with higher income will do better in life. Some Americans believe that welfare encourages illegitimacy, and reducing illegitimacy is a more important goal in the Welfare Reform, than attempting to make single mothers self-sufficient. It has been said that modern welfare is deeply flawed and misleading, and has become a recipe for a disastrous system of aid which harms rather than helps.
Many believe that welfare reduces the work effort, promotes illegitimacy, and poverty prone single parent families. There are advantages and disadvantages about the Welfare Reform, but I truly believe that the good outweigh the bad. Millions have moved from welfare to work, and this absolute proof that welfare works for the better. But some critics does not believe that because they say a lot less people are receiving cash benefits, but a lot more have signed up for other programs, including food stamps, Medicaid, and disability benefits.
Being on welfare does not determine what you will become in life. The Welfare Reform provides too many benefits for everyone; however, it is looked down by many of critics. Being realistic, everyone does not graduate from high school and college, for many different reasons; however, they do not need to suffer for that. Welfare is essential for providing aid for children. The true beneficiary of the Welfare reform is not the poor, but it is the children of America.

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