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News & Events: February 2017

Independent academic research on social policy and poverty has never been more critical.  In the first months of 2017, the Center for Poverty Research will highlight important new research on the safety net, homelessness, and children’s poverty.  Don’t miss our upcoming conference and dialogue with the policy community on children in poverty, February 28th, 2017, details below.

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Upcoming Events

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Policy Briefs

U.S. Safety Net Protects Most Children in Poor Households During Recessions
By Marianne Bitler, UC Davis; Hilary Hoynes, UC Berkeley; and Elira Kuka, Southern Methodist University

The Great Recession led to unemployment rates unseen since the deep recessions of the early 1980s. At the same time, significant changes in the safety net both before and during the downturn have changed the way we support children in vulnerable households. In a new study,[1] we examine how and to what extent the current safety net provides protection to at-risk children during economic downturns. We find that increases in unemployment affect children in the poorest households most. We also find that while the safety net is strongest at stabilizing household incomes for these children, children in immigrant households get no protection.

Shelter Funding for Homeless Individuals and Families Brings Tradeoffs
By Igor Popov, Stanford University

Each year, over 1.5 million Americans rely on homeless programs for overnight shelter.[2] These programs provide beds and services, and they act as a last resort for many of the most impoverished individuals and families in the U.S. In a new study, I found that a higher level of federal funding successfully shelters those who would otherwise be unsheltered, with little evidence that it increases the total of individuals in the homeless population. However, homeless families move to communities with more generous programs, so non-residents also benefit from local funding. This fact may affect local government incentives to fund programs and services.

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