A Profile of Families Cycling on and off Welfare. What do we currently know about families who cycle on and off welfare?


The dramatic caseload decline since the mid-1990s has heightened interest in understanding the circumstances of families who have left welfare. Much of the research on this issue comes from the HHS-sponsored "leavers" studies, which tracked the status of leavers in 11 states and three counties (see Acs and Loprest, 2001, for a review). Other research has also compared leavers with other groups in the caseload, particularly people who did not leave welfare. The existing research on leavers is relevant since cyclers are a subset of groups who leave welfare and groups who return to welfare (recidivists).

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