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Turning Welfare Into a Work Support: Six-Year Impacts on Parents and Children From the Minnesota Family Investment Program.

Publication Year: 
2005
Personal Author: 
Gennetian, Lisa A.
Miller, Cynthia.
Smith, Jared.
Corporate Author: 
MDRC.
Technical Report
Page Count: 
163

The Minnesota Family Investment Program (MFIP) originated, in 1994, as a new vision of a welfare system that would encourage work, reduce reliance on public assistance, and reduce poverty. The program differed from the existing Aid to Families with Dependent Children (AFDC) system in two key ways: It included financial incentives to "make work pay" by allowing families to keep more of their welfare benefit when they worked, and it required longer-term welfare recipients to work or participate in employment services. This report updates the MFIP story in two ways. First, it examines whether the program's effects held up in the longer term, through six years after study entry (earlier studies reported on effects after three years). A primary question of interest is whether MFIP, after it effectively ended in its original form in 1998, provided families with a permanent advantage, increasing their employment or self-sufficiency in the long term, or whether its effects faded after the program ended. Second, the report presents new findings on MFIP's effects on outcomes that were not available or that could not be reliably measured at the three-year point, such as school records data to measure children's school achievement. Results are presented separately for single-parent families and for two-parent families. (Author abstract)

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