Welfare Indicators and Risk Factors: Fourteenth Report to Congress. INDICATOR 1. Degree of Dependence

09/22/2015

Figure IND 1a.  Percentage of Total Income from Means-Tested Assistance Programs: 2012
Percentage of Total Income from Means-Tested Assistance Programs: 2012

Note: Means-tested assistance includes TANF, SSI and SNAP benefits.  Total >50% includes all persons with more than 50 percent of their total annual family income from these means-tested programs.  Income includes cash income and the value of SNAP benefits. 

Source: Unpublished tabulations from the Current Population Survey, Annual Social and Economic Supplement, 2012, analyzed using the TRIM3 microsimulation model.

  • Figure IND 1a shows the percentage of persons in families with varying degrees of total income that derived from means-tested assistance programs in 2012.
  • The majority of persons (76.4 percent) lived in families that received no income from means-tested assistance programs in 2012.
  • Twenty-four (23.6) percent of all persons lived in families that received means-tested assistance.  Five (5.1) percent of persons lived in families that received more than half of their income from means-tested assistance programs.  These persons would be considered welfare dependent under the definition of dependence used in this report.18
  • Table IND 1a shows the percentage of persons in families with varying degrees of reliance on income from means-tested assistance programs by selected demographic characteristics.  Among racial and ethnic groups, Non-Hispanic Blacks were more likely to be welfare dependent (12.0 percent) than were Non-Hispanic Whites (3.1 percent) or Hispanics of any race (7.4 percent).
  • Among age categories, children, particularly from birth to 5 years of age, were more likely to live in families that were welfare dependent than were persons age 16 and older.
  • Among family types, persons living in female-headed families were more likely to be welfare dependent than those in other family categories. 
  • Table IND 1b shows trends in welfare dependence between 1993 and 2012.  Welfare dependence was highest in 1993 at 5.9 percent.  Welfare dependence declined between 1993 and 2000.  After 2000, the downward trend in welfare dependence reversed.  Dependency increased from 3.0 percent in 2000 to 5.3 percent in 2010, before beginning to decline again with 5.1 percent of the population defined as welfare dependent in 2012.

 

Table IND 1a. Percentage of Total Income from Means-Tested Assistance Programs by Selected Characteristics: 2012

 

0%

> 0% and

<= 25%

> 25% and

<= 50%

> 50% and

<= 75%

> 75% and

<= 100%

Total 
> 50%

All Persons

76.4

14.3

4.2

1.7

3.4

5.1

  Racial/Ethnic Categories

    Non-Hispanic White

83.5

10.8

2.6

1.0

2.1

3.1

    Non-Hispanic Black

58.8

20.9

8.3

3.4

8.6

12.0

    Hispanic

62.8

22.6

7.3

2.7

4.6

7.4

  Age Categories

    Children ages 0-5

60.5

21.4

8.5

3.6

6.0

9.6

    Children ages 6-10

63.5

20.0

8.2

3.3

5.0

8.3

    Children ages 11-15

67.4

19.0

6.5

2.9

4.3

7.1

    Women ages 16-64

76.5

14.0

4.0

1.6

3.9

5.5

    Men ages 16-64

80.4

12.9

3.0

1.1

2.6

3.7

    Adults ages 65 and over

86.3

9.1

2.1

0.7

1.7

2.5

  Family Categories

    Persons in married-couple families

84.6

11.0

2.5

0.8

1.0

1.8

    Persons in female-headed families

43.9

28.0

12.3

5.8

10.0

15.8

    Persons in male-headed families

62.7

24.7

6.7

2.1

3.7

5.8

    Unrelated persons

80.7

10.3

2.1

1.0

5.9

6.9

Note: Means-tested assistance includes TANF, SSI and SNAP.  Total >50% includes all persons with more than 50 percent of their total annual family income from these means-tested programs.  Income includes cash income and the value of SNAP benefits.  Spouses are not present in the female-headed and male-headed family categories.

Persons of Hispanic ethnicity may be of any race.  Beginning in 2002, estimates for Whites and Blacks are for persons reporting a single race only. Persons who reported more than one race are included in the total for all persons but are not shown under any race category.  Due to small sample size, American Indians/Alaska Natives, Asians and Native Hawaiians/Other Pacific Islanders are included in the total for all persons but are not shown separately.

Source: Unpublished tabulations from the Current Population Survey, Annual Social and Economic Supplement, 2012, analyzed using the TRIM3 microsimulation model.

 

Table IND 1b.  Percentage of Total Income from Means-Tested Assistance Programs:  1993-2012

 

0%

> 0% and

<= 25%

> 25% and <= 50%

> 50% and <= 75%

> 75% and

<= 100%

Total

> 50%

1993

83.4

7.8

3.0

1.8

4.1

5.9

1994

82.8

8.4

3.1

1.8

4.0

5.8

1995

83.2

8.5

3.1

1.8

3.5

5.3

1996

84.0

7.8

3.1

1.9

3.3

5.2

1997

85.3

7.7

2.5

1.5

3.1

4.5

1998

86.5

7.3

2.5

1.3

2.5

3.8

1999

86.7

7.7

2.3

1.1

2.2

3.3

2000

87.5

7.3

2.2

1.0

2.0

3.0

2001

87.4

7.3

2.2

1.0

2.1

3.1

2002

86.8

7.8

2.3

1.0

2.1

3.2

2003

85.9

8.2

2.4

1.1

2.4

3.6

2004

85.0

8.8

2.5

1.1

2.5

3.7

2005

84.7

8.9

2.6

1.1

2.7

3.8

2006

84.4

9.3

2.6

1.1

2.6

3.7

2007

84.1

9.7

2.8

1.1

2.3

3.4

2008

82.9

10.3

2.8

1.1

2.8

4.0

2009

80.1

11.4

3.9

1.5

3.1

4.6

2010

77.3

13.2

4.2

1.7

3.6

5.3

2011

76.9

13.8

4.1

1.7

3.5

5.2

2012

76.4

14.3

4.2

1.7

3.4

5.1

Note: Means-tested assistance includes TANF, SSI and SNAP.  Total >50% includes all persons with more than 50 percent of their total annual family income from these means-tested programs.  Income includes cash income and the value of SNAP benefits.

Source: Unpublished tabulations from the Current Population Survey, Annual Social and Economic Supplement, 2012, analyzed using the TRIM3 microsimulation model.

Figure IND 1b.  Percentage of Total Income from Various Sources by Poverty Status: 2012

Percentage of Total Income from Various Sources by Poverty Status: 2012

Note: Total income is total annual family income, including the value of SNAP benefits.  Other income is non-means-tested, non-earnings income such as child support, alimony, pensions, Social Security benefits, interest and dividends.  Poverty status categories are not mutually exclusive.

Source: Unpublished tabulations from the Current Population Survey, Annual Social and Economic Supplement, 2012, analyzed using the TRIM3 microsimulation model.

  • Figure IND 1b shows sources of income by poverty status in 2012.  There is a clear association between poverty status and receiving income from means-tested assistance programs. 
  • Persons in families with incomes below the poverty line received 42.6 percent of their income from earnings and 38.2 percent from means-tested assistance programs.  Persons in families with incomes at 200 percent or more of the poverty line received 85.7 percent of their income from earnings and 0.2 percent of their income from means-tested assistance programs.  
  • The percentage of family income that comes from earnings is inversely proportional to overall family income relative to the poverty line.  For example, the percentage of income received from earnings for persons in families living in deep poverty (below 50 percent of the poverty line) was 22.7 percent compared to 42.6 percent for all poor persons in 2012.
  • Table IND 1c shows sources of income by poverty status for various demographic groups.  On average, persons in married-couple families and male heads of household receive higher proportions of their family income from earnings than do female heads of households.
  • Table IND 1d shows the percentage of income from various sources across selected years.  The percentage of income received from earnings for persons in families with incomes below the poverty line increased from 40.4 percent in 1995 to 49.5 percent in 2000.  In 2012, the rate had decreased to 42.6 percent. 
  • Over the same time period, the percentage of income from means-tested programs among persons in poor families decreased from 41.3 percent in 1995 to 30.3 percent in 2000.  In 2012, the rate increased to 38.2 percent.

 

Table IND 1c.  Percentage of Total Income from Various Sources by Poverty Status and Selected Characteristics: 2012

 

<50% Poverty

<100% of Poverty

<200% of Poverty

200%+ of Poverty

All

Persons

All Persons

  TANF, SSI and SNAP

63.5

38.2

15.0

0.2

1.8

  Earnings

22.7

42.6

62.6

85.7

83.3

  Other income

13.8

19.1

22.4

14.1

14.9

Racial/Ethnic Categories

  Non-Hispanic White

    TANF, SSI and SNAP

59.8

36.7

12.1

0.1

0.9

    Earnings

23.1

37.5

57.0

84.5

82.6

    Other income

17.0

25.7

30.9

15.4

16.4

  Non-Hispanic Black

    TANF, SSI and SNAP

69.7

47.3

23.4

0.5

5.1

    Earnings

17.9

33.5

54.9

85.6

79.4

    Other income

12.4

19.2

21.7

13.9

15.5

  Hispanic

    TANF, SSI and SNAP

61.3

33.0

14.1

0.6

4.1

    Earnings

27.4

54.9

74.5

90.8

86.6

    Other income

11.3

12.1

11.4

8.7

9.4

 Age Categories

   Children ages 0-5

     TANF, SSI and SNAP

67.2

41.8

19.2

0.2

3.5

     Earnings

22.4

46.3

70.8

94.5

90.3

     Other income

10.4

11.9

10.0

5.3

6.1

  Children ages 6-10

    TANF, SSI and SNAP

67.1

40.6

18.4

0.2

3.1

    Earnings

20.9

46.2

70.6

93.9

90.2

    Other income

12.0

13.2

11.0

5.9

6.7

  Children ages 11-15

    TANF, SSI and SNAP

65.7

40.2

16.8

0.2

2.6

    Earnings

20.9

44.9

69.4

92.7

89.3

    Other income

13.4

14.9

13.8

7.2

8.1

  Women ages 16-64

    TANF, SSI and SNAP

62.9

38.7

15.4

0.2

1.6

    Earnings

22.5

42.2

65.6

89.2

87.0

    Other income

14.6

19.2

19.0

10.5

11.3

  Men ages 16-64

    TANF, SSI and SNAP

57.2

34.3

12.7

0.2

1.2

    Earnings

27.4

45.8

68.9

90.6

88.9

    Other income

15.5

19.9

18.4

9.1

9.9

  Adults ages 65 and over

    TANF, SSI and SNAP

53.7

31.3

8.9

0.3

1.2

    Earnings

7.5

7.3

11.8

42.8

39.7

    Other income

38.8

61.3

79.3

56.9

59.1

Family Categories

  Persons in married-couple families

    TANF, SSI and SNAP

57.7

31.1

10.6

0.2

0.9

    Earnings

28.1

54.3

71.7

86.7

85.6

    Other income

14.2

14.6

17.7

13.2

13.5

  Persons in female-headed families

    TANF, SSI and SNAP

70.6

46.5

25.5

1.0

8.7

    Earnings

16.8

35.4

53.9

81.3

72.7

    Other income

12.7

18.1

20.6

17.7

18.6

  Persons in male-headed families

    TANF, SSI and SNAP

61.5

39.3

16.2

0.7

3.4

    Earnings

27.1

43.6

64.2

86.5

82.5

    Other income

11.4

17.2

19.6

12.9

14.0

Note: Total income is total annual family income, including the value of SNAP benefits.  Other income is non-means-tested, non-earnings income such as child support, alimony, pensions, Social Security benefits, interest and dividends.  Poverty status categories are not mutually exclusive.  Spouses are not present in the female-headed and male-headed family categories.  Persons of Hispanic ethnicity may be of any race.  Beginning in 2002, estimates for Whites and Blacks are for persons reporting a single race only.  Persons who reported more than one race are included in the total for all persons but are not shown under any race category.  Due to small sample size, American Indians/Alaska Natives, Asians and Native Hawaiians/Other Pacific Islanders are included in the total for all persons but are not shown separately.

Source: Unpublished tabulations from the Current Population Survey, Annual Social and Economic Supplement, 2012, analyzed using the TRIM3 microsimulation model.

Table IND 1d.  Percentage of Total Income from Various Sources: Selected Years

 

< 50% Poverty

<100% of

Poverty

<200% of Poverty

200%+ of Poverty

1995

  AFDC, SSI and Food Stamps

65.9

41.3

14.2

0.3

  Earnings

22.5

40.4

64.8

85.4

  Other income

11.6

18.3

21.0

14.3

1998

  AFDC, SSI and Food Stamps

58.9

32.0

10.6

0.2

  Earnings

27.0

47.9

67.8

85.3

  Other income

14.1

20.1

21.6

14.5

2000

  TANF, SSI and Food Stamps

54.3

30.3

9.8

0.2

  Earnings

30.5

49.5

68.7

86.7

  Other income

15.2

20.3

21.5

13.0

2004

  TANF, SSI and Food Stamps

58.4

31.1

10.4

0.2

  Earnings

25.7

48.2

67.2

86.8

  Other income

15.9

20.7

22.4

13.0

2005

  TANF, SSI and Food Stamps

58.5

32.5

10.4

0.2

  Earnings

25.3

46.6

68.2

86.6

  Other income

16.2

20.8

21.4

13.2

2006

  TANF, SSI and Food Stamps

58.2

31.4

10.4

0.2

  Earnings

27.7

48.3

68.6

86.5

  Other income

14.1

20.3

21.0

13.3

2009

  TANF, SSI and SNAP

62.0

35.8

13.6

0.2

  Earnings

25.2

44.2

62.8

85.8

  Other income

12.8

20.0

23.6

14.0

2010

  TANF, SSI and SNAP

64.6

38.1

14.9

0.2

  Earnings

21.7

41.7

61.7

85.6

  Other income

13.6

20.3

23.4

14.2

2011

  TANF, SSI and SNAP

65.4

37.8

14.5

0.2

  Earnings

21.2

42.4

62.5

85.7

  Other income

13.5

19.8

23.0

14.1

2012

  TANF, SSI and SNAP

63.5

38.2

15.0

0.2

  Earnings

22.7

42.6

62.6

85.7

  Other income

13.8

19.1

22.4

14.1

 

Note: Total income is total annual family income, including the value of SNAP benefits.  Other income is non-means-tested, non-earnings income such as child support, alimony, pensions, Social Security benefits, interest and dividends.  Poverty status categories are not mutually exclusive.

Source: Unpublished tabulations from the Current Population Survey, Annual Social and Economic Supplement, 1996-2012, analyzed using the TRIM3 microsimulation model.


18 For a discussion on defining welfare dependence, please see “Measuring Welfare Dependence” in Chapter I.

 

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