A study unveils the wide racial and geographic disparities in how states distribute cash welfare, known as TANF (Temporary Assistance for Needy Families). The amount of cash welfare assistance for families in poverty receives largely depends on where they live, with welfare eroding in all states except Oregon, during the past 20 years according to a study by the Urban Institute.
After the President Bill Clinton overhaul, the states with the largest share of African Americans tend to have the least generous welfare benefits, and more restrictive policies, according to the study. These states have shorter periods of eligibility, the requirements are stricter, and the sanctions are more severe for those who don’t abide by the rules.
Heather Hahn, a senior fellow at the Urban Institute, warns that with the Trump administration overhauling the programs and the giving of states more control will more than likely exacerbate existing racial disparities.
Block grants fund TANF, and if you have been watching the news lately, you have seen the reduction of those Grants by the Trump Administration. The turning over of these grants to the state will end the federal guarantee of assistance.
Currently, for every 100 low-income families in America that receive cash assistance, only 24 families receive assistance compared to 64 in 1996.