fare them well

tracking what’s changing for welfare, women and children

NY families not getting eligible money, study finds

The Center for Governmental Research— a non-partisan, independent think thank based in Rochester, NY — released a report this fall documenting a nearly 40 percent decline in children receiving subsidies since 2001–from 13,575 children served in an average month in 2001 to 8,400 children served on average during the first four months of 2007.

According to the report, over 12,000 children in Monroe County are living in families that are potentially eligible for child care assistance and are not receiving it.

Many of those families also receiving TANF, or welfare aid, but still are not receiving extra child assistance.

The report details several policy changes at the county and state levels have contributed to the decline in children receiving assistance:

  • Since 2002, income eligibility for child care subsidies in Monroe County has fallen from 200 percent of poverty to 165 percent.
  • While fewer families are income-eligible for assistance, more parents seeking child care subsidies are being denied. The rate of applicant denial increased from 11 percent in 2001 to 50 percent in 2006. A contributing factor to this increase in denials was failure of applicants to comply with a 2004 New York State law that requires applicants to seek child support payment as a condition of receiving child care assistance. (Federal law does not require parents to seek child support from a non-custodial parent in order to obtain a child care subsidy although several states have this requirement.)
  • Finally, the county has decreased spending on child care in recent years, contributing to an accumulation of approximately $5 million in unspent child care funds.

The report was unable to conclude why a large number of TANF child care cases were of a short duration or why few families transitioned to the income-eligible child care assistance program.

December 10, 2007 Posted by | Kid Concerns, Related Reports | , , , , , | Leave a comment

New Yorker sick of state health policies

Courstesy Fed-Up in Western New York

One blogger in New York has one DVD on the top of his Christmas list.

Fed- Up in Western New York reports gives points to Michael Moore’s movie Sicko — now on DVD — for illuminating disparities in national and local health systems.

He took a lesson from the movie and found out that one in six adults in NY don’t have health insurance. That fact came from a story in the New York Sun: about a report from the state department of health, entitled: Report: One Million New Yorkers Are Without Insurance.

Fed-Up also dug deeper to find out just how many children and families are dependent on public aid and Medicaid from the state:

But according to the blog, a new stadium is the only thing on the state’s wish list for residents upstate.

November 12, 2007 Posted by | Related Reports | , , , , , | Leave a comment

Blogger says Mom with Mercedes not typical for welfare

Feeding children of low-incomes families in the United States is as simple as W-I-C.courtesy the WIC Program

For years, the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants and Children has provided food, education and social services to low-income participants at no cost. The WIC serves pregnant women, postpartum and breast-feeding women, as well as infants and children up to five years who have nutritional needs.

Each month, more than 8.1 million people receive WIC benefits in the form of grants provided by the federal government to each state. But not all WIC state agency policies are alike.

One parent fed up with the uneven policy of asking customers if they use WIC funds wrote about the policy in his blog. Average Bro says his wife was appalled that a cashier at Giant Food grocery store allegedly asked his African American wife if she was paying for the baby food piled in her hands with WIC funds. The woman had been to the store several times and says she’s never been asked this question.

Never.

Thing is, AverageBro found fault in the fact that he thinks his wife is anything but an “average” WIC mom. Rather, she was a model mom. He writes,

why in the hell would a cashier look at my wife an assume we’re in need of public assistance? My wife is a statuesque former college homecoming queen and beauty pageant winner. She also (pre-AverageBaby) was a bank vice president. She is educated and intelligent. She is home by choice, not by circumstance, because her husband (who is also intelligent and educated) can afford the luxury. She took the baby food outside and placed it in her Mercedes Benz. She drove the Mercedes Benz back to a half-million dollar home. But all the cashier saw when she looked at her was a welfare mother.

One man’s opinion, yes. But it is dangerous for The WIC says states choose stores based on “the prices of foods, the business integrity of the store’s owner, and the variety and quantity of foods available in the store.” It’s a concern that perhaps these stores are being chosen because of the notion of being near low-income households. To assume that every customer is a recipient of WIC just because of a certain neighborhood characteristics does not go far to lessen stereotyping of low-income families. What’s more, WIC stipulations mention little on a set, uniformed policy on asking customers about receiving benefits. If the standard varies from state to state, no doubt it varies from customer to customer.

WIC Fact Sheet

October 22, 2007 Posted by | Other Opinions | , , , , , , | Leave a comment

The Sentencing Project

http://www.sentencingproject.org/

October 7, 2007 Posted by | Links we Like | , , , , , | Leave a comment

Lifetime Welfare Ban for Drug-Using Parents Dooms Children

Life Sentences: Denying Welfare Benefits to Women Convicted of Drug OffensesThe findings of a report released by The Sentencing Project in 2002 are eerily accurate in predicting the fate of children of parents convicted of a drug-related offense. For several ex-offenders with low-income families, their faulty past is made present every day by fact that more than 40 states prohibit federally assistance to drug offenders.

This article not only discusses the possibility of denying more than 100,000 children benefits based on the past parental decisions; the Alliance for Children and Families suggests ways to improve state policies for these underserved children.

October 7, 2007 Posted by | Courts and Crime, Legally Speaking | , , , , , | 1 Comment

U.S. Administration for Families & Children

http://www.acf.hhs.gov/programs/ofa/

October 7, 2007 Posted by | Links we Like | , , , | Leave a comment