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Participation in the U.S. Social Safety Net: Coverage of Low-income Families, 2018

Publication Date
Suzanne Macartney & Robin Ghertner

Participation in the social safety net varies widely across programs—from 15 percent among eligibles for subsidized child care (CCDF) to over 75 percent for Medicaid/CHIP and EITC. 

Participation differs by race and ethnicity, yet patterns are not consistent. In general rates differ more across programs than between race-ethnic groups.

In 2018, entitlement benefits (child support, EITC, Medicaid/CHIP, SNAP, and SSI) had participation rates above 50 percent, whereas the four non-entitlement programs (CCDF, housing assistance, LIHEAP, and TANF) had rates below 30 percent.

Related Products:

Product Type
ASPE Issue Brief
Low-Income Populations
Child Care Development Fund (CCDF) | Children's Health Insurance Program (CHIP) | Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) | Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) | Medicaid | Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) | Supplemental Security Income (SSI) | Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF)