Indicators of Welfare Dependence: Annual Report to Congress, 2001 . Indicator 2: Receipt of Means-tested Assistance and Labor Force Attachment

03/01/2001

Figure IND 2a. Percentage of Recipients in Families with Labor Force Participants, by Program: 1998

 Figure IND 2a. Percentage of Recipients in Families with Labor Force Participants, by Program: 1998

Source: March CPS data, analyzed using the TRIM3 microsimulation model.


  • In 1998, 56 percent of individuals who received TANF, 57 percent of individuals who received food stamps, and 37 percent of individuals who received SSI were in families with at least one person in the labor force.

  • About one-fourth of TANF and food stamp recipients live in families with a part-time labor force participant.  In contrast, SSI recipients were more likely to live in families with no labor force participant, or in families with a full-time worker.

  • As shown in Table IND 2a, among recipients of TANF, food stamps, and SSI, a larger percentage of children under age 6 were in families with at least one full-time worker, as compared to children ages 6 to 15. 

  • Working-age male recipients of TANF and food stamps were more likely than working-age females to be in families with at least one full-time worker.

Table IND 2a. Percentage of Recipients in Families with Labor Force Participants, by Program, Race, and Age: 1998

    No one in LF At least one in LF, No one FT At least one FT worker
TANF All Persons 44.3 25.8 29.9
  Non-Hispanic White 38.5 28.2 33.3
  Non-Hispanic Black 53.4 24.8 21.9
  Hispanic 42.1 21.5 36.5
  Children Ages 0-5 46.9 20.6 32.6
  Children Ages 6-10 48.0 24.7 27.4
  Children Ages 11-15 44.3 30.9 24.8
  Women Ages 16-64 43.5 27.9 28.5
  Men Ages 16-64 32.2 28.2 39.6
  Adults Age 65 and over 67.9 8.0 24.1
SSI All Persons 63.4 9.0 27.5
  Non-Hispanic White 68.1 8.9 23.0
  Non-Hispanic Black 66.3 8.4 25.3
  Hispanic 54.5 9.1 36.4
  Children Ages 0-5 27.4 16.3 56.3
  Children Ages 6-10 39.4 19.9 40.7
  Children Ages 11-15 29.0 23.3 47.6
  Women Ages 16-64 68.9 9.1 22.0
  Men Ages 16-64 67.8 8.8 23.4
  Adults Age 65 and over 67.7 4.6 27.7
FOOD STAMPS All Persons 43.1 24.8 32.2
  Non-Hispanic White 43.4 24.8 31.8
  Non-Hispanic Black 45.5 25.4 29.1
  Hispanic 39.2 21.2 39.7
  Children Ages 0-5 36.8 24.3 38.9
  Children Ages 6-10 37.0 26.4 36.6
  Children Ages 11-15 38.8 29.5 31.8
  Women Ages 16-64 43.3 26.6 30.1
  Men Ages 16-64 39.8 24.6 35.6
  Adults Age 65 and over 88.6 6.7 4.6

Note: Recipients are limited to those individuals or family members directly receiving benefits in a month. Full-time workers are those who usually work 35 hours or more per week. Part-time labor force participation includes those who are unemployed, laid off, and/or looking for work. This indicator measures, on an average monthly basis, the combination of individual benefit receipt and labor force participation by any family member in the same month. Differences between data presented in this report and the 2000 Indicators of Welfare Dependence report are discussed in Appendix D.

Source: March CPS data, analyzed using the TRIM3 microsimulation model.


Figure IND 2b. Percentage of AFDC/TANF Recipients in Families with Labor Force Participants: 1993-1998

Figure IND 2b. Percentage of AFDC/TANF Recipients in Families with Labor Force Participants: 1993-1998

Source: March CPS data, analyzed using the TRIM3 microsimulation model.


  • The percentage of AFDC/TANF recipients living in families with at least one full-time worker increased during the mid-to-late 1990s, from 19 percent in 1993 to 30 percent in 1998.

  • The percentage of AFDC/TANF recipients living in families with no one in the labor force dropped significantly between 1993 and 1998.  In 1998, only 44 percent of AFDC/TANF recipients lived in families with no one in the labor force in the same month as benefit receipt, as compared to 57 percent in 1993.
  • Some of the increase in full-time work among AFDC/TANF recipients represents a shift from part-time to full-time work.  In fact, 1998 marked the first time in several years that the majority of AFDC/TANF recipients living in families with at least one labor force participant also lived with at least one full-time worker.

Table IND 2b. Percentage of AFDC/TANF Recipients in Families with Labor Force Participants: 1993-1998

  No one in LF At least one in LF, No one FT At least one FT worker
1993 57.0 24.2 18.8
1994 54.8 24.8 20.4
1995 50.6 24.3 25.1
1996 50.1 25.6 24.3
1997 47.6 28.0 24.4
1998 44.3 25.8 29.9

Note: Recipients are limited to those individuals or family members directly receiving benefits in a month.  Full-time workers are those who usually work 35 hours or more per week.  Part-time labor force participation includes those who are unemployed, laid off, and/or looking for work.  This indicator measures, on an average monthly basis, the combination of individual benefit receipt and labor force participation by any family member in the same month. Differences between data presented in this report and the 2000 Indicators of Welfare Dependence report are discussed in Appendix D.

Source:  March CPS data, analyzed using the TRIM3 microsimulation model.

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