May 12, Studies show that abused or neglected children placed in foster care face lifelong challenges greater than children who remain with their families.
Improving Learning Environments Income can also help families afford more effective learning environments, from child care through college.
This finding builds on earlier research suggesting that access to center-based child care for low-income young children has benefits for their cognitive development. In a previously mentioned study, children who received Mothers Pensions roughly a century ago lived an average of about a year longer than otherwise-similar children who were turned down.
The evidence suggests otherwise. Educational gains have been found both from income-support programs that raise parental employment and those that do not. One cross-program comparison of 16 local welfare-to-work and anti-poverty policies in the early s noted: All of these policies increased parental employment, while only some increased family income.
These analyses indicated improved academic achievement for preschool and elementary school children by programs that boosted both income and parental employment, but not by programs that only increased employment.
Taken together, this suggests that income gains tend to help children succeed in school, while lifting parental employment is neither necessary nor sufficient to do so.
The study divided families at random into three groups. Cash assistance benefit levels have since eroded further in Minnesota and most other states.
A third group received those positive work incentives plus work requirements backed by financial penalties. The Incentives Only policy raised average incomes by 11 percent among long-term public assistance recipients, relative to the control group. The majority of the recipients remained below the poverty line, though, even after counting their food stamps and EITC.
Adding the mandates increased earnings but decreased welfare income, resulting in no significant change in net income relative to the Incentives Only group.
There is little doubt that good child care can help children succeed and that one way income support can help children succeed is by enabling their parents to purchase better child care. Welfare time limits and other stringent welfare rules — which, in the absence of adequate child care or other services, often function more as a cut in assistance than as a path to stable employment — have been found to have harmful effects in other studies as well.
One Delaware study found that the child protective services agency was more likely to become involved with families that had been randomly assigned to a program of lower welfare benefits, time limits, strict work requirements backed by financial penalties, and other limitations, relative to families receiving a modestly more generous traditional welfare program in the s.
The findings are consistent, however, with the previously mentioned study finding that child maltreatment and child protective services involvement fell after state and federal EITC expansions boosted family incomes.
More Research Is Needed, But Available Evidence Is Compelling The bulk of evidence supports the conclusion that economic security programs play a strong role in helping low-income children, although there are exceptions.
In science, including the social and behavioral sciences, individual studies are rarely conclusive by themselves; what matters is where the bulk of evidence lies.
On balance, the evidence is strongly on the side of the importance of income assistance for low-income children. Of the 34 studies identified, only five found no evidence of an income effect on any of the outcomes examined, and methodological problems contributed to this result in at least four of those five, the researchers said.
These targeting issues may explain the difference in findings with Aizer et al. No doubt part of that impact is due to greater college enrollment; Manoli and Turner found evidence that income from the EITC raises college entry rates for high school seniors.
It would be surprising for college gains of that size not to raise later earnings, and leaving out year-olds may be an important omission. Finally, the authors of the follow-up study tracked down only 59 percent of the children that they tried to locate. Another area needing further study is the stage of childhood at which income matters most.
At the same time, there is also substantial evidence of income effects in older childhood, especially for other types of outcomes. Further research would provide more insight.
Conclusion Economic security policies help form a critical foundation for the well-being of children by ensuring that low-income families can put food on the table, pay the rent, and afford other basics. Children in poverty had gray matter volumes 8 to 10 percent below normal in several areas of the brain associated with school readiness skills, one research team found.
For example, mothers targeted by the expansion of the EITC showed signs of reduced stress such as less inflammation and lower diastolic blood pressure. Evans and Craig L. Gennetian, and Greg J.
Jane Costello et al. Researchers also found an effect of gender: A simple average across all eight variants shows similar results: An earlier version of this paper is at http: Evidence from the Earned Income Tax Credit: The researchers studied effects on high school seniors whose family incomes were near the first kink point of the EITC benefit schedule.
An earlier version of the paper is at http: The study did not collect data on school outcomes.Early Academic Training Produces Long-Term Harm Research reveals negative effects of academic preschools and kindergartens. Posted May 05, How the EITC and CTC Work.
The EITC, a federal tax credit for low- and moderate-income working families and individuals, is designed to encourage and reward work, offset federal payroll and income taxes, and raise living standards.
Research References. The following references are selected from publications within the past five years.
These articles were selected to demonstrate the range of social work research related to poverty, its causes, and its impact on people and related social systems. A chronic condition is a human health condition or disease that is persistent or otherwise long-lasting in its effects or a disease that comes with time.
The term chronic is often applied when the course of the disease lasts for more than three months. Common chronic diseases include arthritis, asthma, cancer, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, diabetes and some viral diseases such as.
Early-life stressors brought on by poverty can leave medical scars that linger even in adulthood – regardless of income. In the U.S., breastfeeding is strikingly socially patterned, especially by race and SES.
• We use sibling comparisons to estimate the effect of breastfeeding on long-term child wellbeing.