The Effect of Welfare Reform Essay

The Effect of Welfare Reform Research Proposal


            There are few things that can affect the economy of the United States and effect the people as welfare reform can.  In order to be able to figure out how to answer the question, “What are the effects of welfare reform?” a set method of research is possible to find the answer.  These issues are very significant to the United States for a number of reasons.

Literature Review

            There has been a lot of research on the topic of welfare reform.  This research has looked at a number of different sides to the issue.  The paper will work towards being able to look at these topics and put together information that has previously been researched.  In order to be able to find how the information has been previously gathered and how this information can be linked together the paper will look into the ideas and beliefs that are surrounding the topic of welfare reform.  There are a multitude of people who are affected by welfare reform and even children can not escape the effects.


            The paper will be written by looking at a sampling of other research that has been previously looked at and drawing conclusions based on this research.  The data will be collected by looking at articles that are from scholarly journals.  Then the research will be analyzed and assumptions can be made about how the effects have long term affect.  The interpretation of these results will be a conclusion of issues.

Expected Results

            The results that are expected are that there will be a number of different individuals who are affected by welfare reforms as well as a number of other social areas.

The Effects of Welfare Reform Draft


            The reform of the welfare system has really caused a number of issues for those who have been involved.  There have been issues for both individuals as well as for the nation as a whole through some of the problems that are now occurring as a result to these problems.  These problems are sure to further increase if there are not changes made in an effort to correct these issues.

Literature Review

            In an article written by Bruce D. Meyer and James X. Sullivan a number of welfare related issues were looked at.  These issues looked at the empowerment of the people from the changes in 1996 for welfare reforms.  There has been an increase in the employment of single mothers since the 1996 reforms.  There has also been a notation that these individuals are having problems in a number of ways.  Some of these problems are that without the assistance of welfare there is an increasing problem with these individuals being able to pay their rent and utility bills and purchase food to feed their families.  These problems continue to be issues as without these things there will continue to be problems for those who once qualified for welfare (Meyer and Sullivan 2004).  There have been reports that there have been gains in the welfare system however these gains seem to be coming at the cost to the single mothers that they were intended to help (Eissa, Kleven and Kreiner 2008).

            In another article there was some question as to what the overall affects of the welfare reform would do when looked at as a part of the family as a whole.  What was found is that there continues to be problems with the family’s well being and with the family being able to make ends meet even with the reforms that have happened with the welfare system (Slack, Magnuson, Berger, Yoo, Coley, Dunifon, Dworsky, Kalil, Knab, Lohman, and Osborne 2007).

            Some of the more devastating effects of these welfare reforms are how they have affected the children who are members of these families.  In one researched paper there was a direct connection made to child abuse and the new welfare reforms.  There was also a look at the children who are neglected by their parents who are now working more hours to try and make ends meet (Waldfogel 2004).  Another serious implication on the issues with the children have been the reunification process after there has been state involvement and the children have been placed in a foster care situation.  What has been shown is that there has been a slowing of the process of reunification after the welfare reforms than what was common prior to these reforms.  Some of the problems that have been noted are that child welfare services are looking at the parents incomes as a guideline for reunification (Wells and Guo 2006).


The overall results are that there is a direct connection between the new welfare reforms and many issues that are affecting individuals.  There is an effect on the women who are single mothers, the families as a whole and the children as well.

Discussions and Conclusions

            It is important to find a way to help reunify the families and to help these single mothers and families as a whole to be able to live a decent life where they can afford to pay their bills and provide for all of their needs.

The Effects of Welfare Reform Final Draft


            The reform of the welfare system has had many lasting effects on both individuals and the nation as a whole.  There has been an urge for there to be a change in an effort to control these issues and have better results for all of those who are involved.

Literature Review

            There have been many problems that have been noted since the 1996 welfare reforms.  Some of these problems have at first been noted as improvements.  For instance the single mothers, who are now working in higher rates, are having a hard time paying their bills.  They are forced to choose between necessities of life and juggle their bills.  These bills include rent, utilities, and groceries.  So although these women are working in higher numbers, they are actually finding themselves to be in a place that is worse off financially (Meyer and Sullivan 2004).  Some reports claim that there has been a lack of effort to truly help the single mothers who are being affected by these reforms.   However there has also been the paperwork and the records that have seemed to show an improvement in these areas, which is the correct answer and how to reform things is a bigger issue (Eissa, Kleven, and Kreiner 2008).

            As for families there has been an overall fall into poverty for many of the families who were supposed to be helped with these reforms.  The problems are that some of the families continue to remain on assistance and those who are able to get off of the assistance tend to live in poverty and their lives are no better than they were while living on welfare.  The only difference for these families is that now one of the primary supports of the family are working (Slack, Magnuson, Berger, Yoo, Coley, Dunifon, Dworsky, Kalil, Knab, Lohman, and Osborne 2007).

            One of the biggest problems with these welfare reforms has been how they have affected the children who are a part of the included families.  There are reports of parents who are unequipped to work multiple jobs and extended hours and parent their children properly.  Some things that have been evidenced are a higher rate of child neglect and abuse by the parents who are being stretched so thin (Waldfogel 2004).  Another issue for children is that those who are being placed in foster care are remaining there longer and having a much longer time period prior to reunification.  These issues are alarming as in many cases the parents are working and trying to provide but are not able to make ends meet without being on welfare and are therefore being punished with the loss of their children (Wells and Guo 2006).


            The overall results are that there can be a direct connection drawn between many of the problems that are facing the single mothers, families and children who have been affected with the new welfare reforms.

Discussion and Conclusion

            There are a number of ways that improvements could be made to the current welfare reforms.  The first issue that needs to be resolved is that there needs to be a way for those families who are torn apart by child welfare to be able to be reunified as soon as possible.  There also needs to be assistance in how these single mothers and families are able to support themselves.  This would require ensuring that no one has to do without the necessities of life because of lack of ability to work.


Eissa, N., Kleven, H.J., and Kreiner, C.T. (2008).  Evaluation of Four Tax Reforms in

the United States:  Labor, Supply and Welfare Effects for Single Mothers, Journal of Public Economics, 92(3-4), 795-816.

Meyer, B.D. and Sullivan, J.X. (2004).  The Effects of Welfare Reform:  The Material

Well-Being of Single Mothers in the 1980’s and 1990’s, Journal of Public Economics, 88(7-8), 1387-1420.

Slack, K.S.,  Magnuson, K.A., Berger, L.M., Yoo, J., Coley, R.L., Dunifon, R., Dworsky,

A., Kalil, A., Knab, J., Lohman, B.J., Osborne, C. (2007).  Family Economic Well-Being Following the 1996 Welfare Reform:  Trend Data from Five Non-Experimental Panel Studies, Children and Youth Services Review, 29(6), 698-720.

Waldfogel, J. (2004).  Welfare Reform and the Child Welfare System, Children and

Youth Services Review, 26(10), 919-939.

Wells, K. and Guo, S. (2006).  Welfare Reform and the Child Welfare Outcomes:  A

Multiple-Cohort Study, Children and Youth Services Review, 28(8), 941-960.