TANF policy: Past, present, and future directions


The purpose of this article is to offer a brief and concise history of relevant public welfare policies for a discussion of the effects of public welfare reform, and how it impacts families in ways not comprehensively understood. Social scientists' concerns about the potential for the families to be thrust into an "extreme poverty" status due to the forced workforce participation requirement and expiration of time limited benefits is discussed. A second concern regarding a "one size fits all" approach to work requirements for TANF recipients being unrealistic and insensitive is also discussed. The authors recommend a comprehensive multi-system analysis to determine the impact of welfare reform. There is also a recommendation that the workforce requirements should correlate to an assessment score based on the ability of welfare recipients to function in identified areas. Implications of maintaining a welfare reform policy status quo are identified. © 2006 by The Haworth Press, Inc. All rights reserved.

Publication Title

Journal of Health and Social Policy