Labor

Welfare Reform in Cleveland: Implementation, Effects, and Experiences of Poor Families and Neighborhoods

Welfare Reform in Cleveland: Implementation, Effects, and Experiences of Poor Families and Neighborhoods
MDRC,

Brock, T., Coulton, C., London, A., Polit, D. Richburg-Hayes, L., Scott, E. & Verma, N.
01/01/2002

The 1996 Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act (PRWORA) ushered in profound changes in welfare policy, including a five-year time limit on federally funded cash assistance (known as Temporary Assistance for Needy Families, or TANF), stricter work requirements, and greater flexibility for states in designing and managing programs. The law’s supporters hoped that it would spark innovation and reduce welfare use; critics feared that it would lead to cuts in benefits and widespread suffering. Whether PRWORA’s reforms succeed or fail depends largely on what happens in big cities, where poverty and welfare receipt are most concentrated. This report — one of a series from MDRC’s Project on Devolution and Urban Change — examines how welfare reform unfolded in Ohio’s largest city and county: Cleveland, in Cuyahoga County. Ohio’s TANF program features one of the country’s shortest time limits (36 months) and has a strong emphasis on moving welfare recipients into employment. This study uses field research, surveys and interviews of current and former welfare recipients, state and county welfare and employment records, and indicators of social and economic trends to assess TANF’s implementation and effects. Because of the strong economy and ample funding for services in the late 1990s, it captures welfare reform in the best of times, while also focusing on the poorest families and neighborhoods.

A Randomized Trial of Nurse Specialist Home Care for Women with High Risk Pregnancies: Outcomes and Costs

A Randomized Trial of Nurse Specialist Home Care for Women with High Risk Pregnancies: Outcomes and Costs
American Journal of Managed Care, Volume 7, Number 8, August

Brooten, D., Youngblut, J., Brown L., Finkler, S. et. al.
08/01/2001

OBJECTIVE: To examine prenatal, maternal, and infant outcomes and costs through 1 year after delivery using a model of prenatal care for women at high risk of delivering low-birthweight infants in which half of the prenatal care was provided in women’s homes by nurse specialists with master’s degrees. STUDY DESIGN: Randomized clinical trial. PATIENTS AND METHODS: A sample of 173 women (and 194 infants) with high-risk pregnancies (gestational or pregestational diabetes mellitus, chronic hypertension, preterm labor, or high risk of preterm labor) were randomly assigned to the intervention group (85 women and 94 infants) or the control group (88 women and 100 infants). Control women received usual prenatal care. Intervention women received half of their prenatal care in their homes, with teaching, counseling, telephone outreach, daily telephone availability, and a postpartum home visit by nurse specialists with physician backup. RESULTS:For the full sample, mean maternal age was 27 years; 85.5% of women were single mothers, 36.4% had less than a high school education, 93.6% were African American, and 93.6% had public health insurance, with no differences between groups on these variables. The intervention group had lower fetal/infant mortality vs the control group (2 vs 9), 11 fewer preterm infants, more twin pregnancies carried to term (77.7% vs 33.3%), fewer prenatal hospitalizations (41 vs 49), fewer infant rehospitalizations (18 vs 24), and a savings of more than 750 total hospital days and $2,880,000. CONCLUSION: This model of care provides a reasoned solution to improving pregnancy and infant outcomes while reducing healthcare costs.

Job Loss and Employment Behavior of Older Workers

Job Loss and Employment Behavior of Older Workers
Journal of Labor Economics, April

Chan, S. & Stevens, A.H.
04/01/2001

This article uses data from the Health and Retirement Study to examine the employment patterns of workers aged 50 and above who have experienced an involuntary job loss. Hazard models for returning to work and for exiting post-displacement employment are estimated and used to examine work patterns for 10 years following a job loss. Our findings show that a job loss results in large and lasting effects on future employment probabilities. Four years after job losses at age 55, the employment rate of displaced workers remains 20 percentage points below the employment rate of similar nondisplaced workers.

Women of Color in New York City: The Challenges of the New Global Economy

Women of Color in New York City: The Challenges of the New Global Economy
First Annual  Status of Women of Color Report.

Stafford, W.W.
03/01/2001

The first Status of Women of Color Report originated out of the need to provide data and research focusing on women of color. By drawing attention to the trends seen in income, unemployment, welfare, and incarceration for women of color in New York city , this report summarizes their achievements and lack of it during the 1990's.

Decomposing the Black-White Wealth Gap: The Role of Parental Resources, Inheritance, and Investment Dynamics

Decomposing the Black-White Wealth Gap: The Role of Parental Resources, Inheritance, and Investment Dynamics
Sociological Inquiry. 2001, Vol. 71, pp. 39-66.

Conley, D.
01/01/2001

Much research has shown that even after controlling for income, African Americans suffer from drastically lower net worths than their white counterparts; these differences in net worth have important implications for the overall well-being of blacks and whites. If not directly from labor market disadvantages-i.e., income differentials-then from what does this racial gap in wealth arise? The current study assesses two complementary accounts of this race difference in asset holdings. The first, the historical legacy thesis, suggests that net wealth differences in the current generation are largely a result of discrimination in past generations; that is, they can be traced to the "head start" that whites have enjoyed in accumulating assets and passing them on. The second theory, the contemporary dynamics thesis, holds that current dynamics of institutional racism in the housing and credit markets are more responsible for the gap. The current study tests the relative impact of multi-generational forces and contemporary property and credit dynamics by using two-generational data from the Panel Study of Income Dynamics. It finds that parental wealth and income levels and inheritance all have a significant impact on the wealth levels of the current generation net of respondent socioeconomic characteristics; however, parental wealth and inheritance fail to explain the black-white gap. Further, this study shows that even predicting net worth from that same family's net worth five years prior (also controlling for savings during the interim), there remains a significantly negative effect of African American race. However, breaking out initial net worth into asset types shows that it may be different investment types and returns that explain the difference in asset accumulation over a five-year period.

Multi-Dimensional Profiles of Welfare and Work Dynamics: Development, Validation, and Relationship to Child Cognitive and Mental Health Outcomes

Multi-Dimensional Profiles of Welfare and Work Dynamics: Development, Validation, and Relationship to Child Cognitive and Mental Health Outcomes
American Journal of Community Psychology, 29, pp. 907-936.

Yoshikawa, H. & Seidman, E.
01/01/2001

This prospective longitudinal study addresses the research gap in the literature regarding multidimensional variation in welfare use and employment patterns, and relationships of such variation with parent earnings and child development outcomes. This study also aims to address the limitations of welfare dynamics studies that do not examine how multiple dimensions of welfare receipt and employment co-occur Cluster analysis was utilized, using monthly welfare and employment data from the National Longitudinal Survey of Youth, to examine variation within the welfare population in their welfare and work patterns across the first 5 years of children's lives. Six cluster profiles of welfare and work dynamics were found: Short-Term, Short-Term Work Exit, Working Cyclers, Nonworking Cyclers, Cycle to Long-Term Exit, and Long-Term. The clusters were validated using mother's 6th-year earnings as the criterion. The clusters' associations with child development outcomes in the cognitive and mental health domains (at ages 6 and 7) were then explored. Work following short-term welfare use was associated with higher child reading scores than that following long-term use (a moderate-size effect). Cycling on and off welfare in the context of high levels of employment was associated with higher child internalizing symptoms than cycling accompanied by low levels of employment (a moderate-size effect). Implications for evaluation of TANF welfare-to-work policies are discussed.

The Effects of Job Loss on Older Workers

The Effects of Job Loss on Older Workers
Peter P. Budetti, Richard V. Burkhauser, Janice M. Gregory and H. Allan Hunt (editors), Ensuring Health and Income Security for an Aging Workforce, Kalamazoo: W. E. Upjohn Institute for Employment Research,

Chan, S. & Stevens, A.H.
01/01/2001

This article uses data from the Health and Retirement Study to examine the employment patterns of workers aged 50 and above who have experienced an involuntary job loss. Hazard Models for returning to work and for exiting post displacement employment are estimated and used to examine work patterns for 10 years following a job loss. Our findings show that a job loss results in large and lasting effects on future employment probabilities. Four years after job losses at age 55, the employment rate of displaced workers remains 20 percentage points below the employment rate of similar nondisplaced workers.

The Citizens' Stakes in Collective Bargaining: Recommendations for the Current Negotiations with the Municipal Employee Unions

The Citizens' Stakes in Collective Bargaining: Recommendations for the Current Negotiations with the Municipal Employee Unions
Citizens Budget Commission, December

Brecher, C. et al.
12/01/2000

Nearly all of the City of New York's employees are working without new contracts. In August, the CBC released a report on contract negotiations with the United Federation of Teachers. This report focuses on the rest of the municipal workforce. It provides background information on negotiations and suggests measures to promote more efficient services.

Using Collective Bargaining to Improve Public Education: Recommendations for the 2000 Negotiations With the United Federation of Teachers

Using Collective Bargaining to Improve Public Education: Recommendations for the 2000 Negotiations With the United Federation of Teachers
Citizens Budget Commission, August

Brecher, C., Lynam, E. & Searcy, C.
08/01/2000

In September 2000, formal negotiations begin over the terms of the next public school teachers' contract, which expires later this year. This report identifies priority changes to the contract that would help make New York public schools more effective.

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