Attitudes of welfare recipients toward marriage and childbearing

Attitudes of welfare recipients toward marriage and childbearing The 1996 Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunities Reconciliation Act (PRWORA) put the need for attitudinal change at the center of efforts to help welfare recipients become economically independent, avoid out-of-wedlock childbearing, and embrace marriage. In this paper, we focus specifically on attitudes, analyzing both differences in values and attitudes between welfare recipients and other women on the cusp of reform, as well as the effects of TANF reforms in two states on the attitudes and behaviors of women subject to the reforms. National data reveal few differences in values and attitudes between welfare recipients and other women once background characteristics are held constant. A majority of both groups believes that prospective parents should marry, but single parents can raise a child as well as married parents. Personal aspirations for marriage and further childbearing also are fairly similar. These similarities may be one reason that the literature has shown TANF to have limited effects on marriage and childbearing. A second set of analyses investigates the degree to which welfare recipients in Delaware and Indiana report that reforms affected their aspirations for marriage and childbearing. Self-reported impacts are greater for fertility than marriage attitudes. Even among those who report their attitudes were affected by reform, recipients appear to have difficulty acting on their marital and childbearing desires, dampening any effects on behavior. These findings reinforce the current sense among researchers and policy makers that more direct reforms are needed to have a substantial effect on marriage and out-of-wedlock childbearing. Population Research and Policy Review Springer Journals

Attitudes of welfare recipients toward marriage and childbearing

Loading next page...
Kluwer Academic Publishers
Copyright © 2004 by Kluwer Academic Publishers
Geography; Demography; Economic Policy; Population Economics
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site


You’re reading a free preview. Subscribe to read the entire article.

DeepDyve is your
personal research library

It’s your single place to instantly
discover and read the research
that matters to you.

Enjoy affordable access to
over 12 million articles from more than
10,000 peer-reviewed journals.

All for just $49/month

Explore the DeepDyve Library

Unlimited reading

Read as many articles as you need. Full articles with original layout, charts and figures. Read online, from anywhere.

Stay up to date

Keep up with your field with Personalized Recommendations and Follow Journals to get automatic updates.

Organize your research

It’s easy to organize your research with our built-in tools.

Your journals are on DeepDyve

Read from thousands of the leading scholarly journals from SpringerNature, Elsevier, Wiley-Blackwell, Oxford University Press and more.

All the latest content is available, no embargo periods.

See the journals in your area

Monthly Plan

  • Read unlimited articles
  • Personalized recommendations
  • No expiration
  • Print 20 pages per month
  • 20% off on PDF purchases
  • Organize your research
  • Get updates on your journals and topic searches


Start Free Trial

14-day Free Trial

Best Deal — 39% off

Annual Plan

  • All the features of the Professional Plan, but for 39% off!
  • Billed annually
  • No expiration
  • For the normal price of 10 articles elsewhere, you get one full year of unlimited access to articles.



billed annually
Start Free Trial

14-day Free Trial