Recommendation On Welfare Reform Essay

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Welfare is a complex and politically divisive issue facing our nation today. There are many types of government subsidies which benefit people in every socioeconomic class, but for the purposes of this paper, we will refer to welfare as government aid to the poor. Although there are many other kinds of government welfare (social security, tax deductions, etc.), our main concern is to address the problem of poverty, and to remedy the tendency of certain groups to become trapped in its vicious cycle. The authors of this paper believe that the problem of welfare is, in fact, the problem of poverty. This problem cannot be understood in terms of one variable. We choose to examine the problem from an economical, cultural, and functional…show more content…
In conjunction with the Department of Agriculture, the SSA determined that lower income families of three or more people spend up to one third of their income on food. A decision was therefore made to set the poverty line at three times the cost of a minimally decent diet, with annual adjustments according to changes in the Consumer Price Index (CPI). U.S. public policy has addressed the problem of alleviating poverty since 1930. Various measures have been put into place to achieve this goal, yielding mixed results. The first systematic attempt to provide a social safety net was Franklin Roosevelt's New Deal, designed to combat the effects of the Great Depression. It had three main programs: Unemployment Insurance, which provided for those who lost their job due to any reason other than quitting or being fired, and was to last only 26 weeks. The Social Security System was aimed at aiding the elderly, the disabled, and families whose breadwinner was deceased. Aid to Families with Dependent Children was designed as a temporary program to provide basic support for nonelderly families w/ children under 18 who had no able-bodied man in the house, and were below the poverty line. (Ellwood, 30). These three programs were all set up under the Social Security Act of 1935, and they assumed two main things. First, that the basic family unit is the nuclear family (i.e. a married couple with children), and second,

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