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Community Service Employment: A New Opportunity Under TANF

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Publication Date: November 2007

Publisher(s): Center for Law and Social Policy

Author(s): Mark Greenberg; Steve Savner

Special Collection: John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation

Topic: Social conditions (Public welfare and social services)

Type: Brief

Coverage: United States

Abstract:

Under TANF, states face steadily increasing work participation requirements. For many states, an initial approach may be to make greater use of work experience programs, with which states often have some recent experience and to attempt to initiate wage subsidy programs to place participants in private sector jobs. As discussed here however, each of these options has significant limitations. States need to explore every alternative that has the prospect to both satisfy the new participation requirements, and to improve the financial security and employment prospects of poor families. Accordingly, it is particularly important for states to appreciate the new possibilities of making use of TANF funds for community service employment.