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Welfare is no substitute for a child tax credit

The Temporary Assistance for Needy Families program - touted by members of Congress as a highly effective cash assistance program for low-income parents and kids - is a program distinguished by failure and no substitute for a monthly federal stipend for families with children.... Read more»

The cruel failure of welfare reform in the Southwest

In the 25 years since President Bill Clinton took Ronald Reagan's notions to their apotheosis in his 1996 welfare reform law - which Clinton said would “end welfare as we know it” - federal welfare funding, frozen by law at 1996 levels, has been decimated.... Read more»

States are hoarding $5.2 billion in welfare funds even as the need for aid grows

States are sitting on $5.2 billion in unspent funds from the federal Temporary Assistance for Needy Families program amid rising poverty rates among all age groups across the county. ... Read more»

Utah makes welfare so hard to get, some feel they must join the LDS Church to get aid

Utah has been counting millions in LDS Church welfare work every year as part of the state’s welfare budget, as a way of meeting the minimum level of effort the state is required to put into addressing poverty so it can collect on federal dollars and increasing church membership.... Read more»

Black women with children excluded from federal cash assistance program, report finds

Experts at the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities outline how states can remove restrictive requirements placed on Black families to receive cash assistance for food, bills or rent, after research found that Black women with children were repeatedly excluded from the programs.... Read more»

Candidate commentary

Portela: Collective queasiness about the eviction cliff

Before the global health pandemic, there was an eviction crisis; the only difference is we now have money from the state and federal government to help our community. — Andres Portela, Ward 6 Tucson City Council candidate... Read more»

Arizona poverty rate continued fall in 2019, still topped national rate

Despite the improvements, the Census Bureau numbers show Arizona’s poverty rate remained higher than the nation, where the rate was 12.3% last year.... Read more»

Closing loopholes or slamming doors? Advocates blast SNAP changes

Advocates told a House subcommittee Thursday that a Trump administration plan to “close loopholes” in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program would actually slam the door on millions of recipients, including as many as 72,000 in Arizona. ... Read more»

Advocates decry Trump administration plan to rein in food stamp access

Arizona is one of the 43 states that could be affected by a Trump administration proposal to tighten restrictions on access to food stamps for people receiving other financial assistance.... Read more»

Factcheck: Meme falsely compares benefits for refugees, senior citizens

A popular meme falsely claims that each month refugees in the United States receive over three times more money in “federal assistance” than Social Security beneficiaries. That’s a new version of an old claim we debunked more than a decade ago.... Read more»

What the Devil won't tell you

Morlock: What price Mom's life?

A view of health reform from inside the ICU provides much clarity: Patient-centered, market-oriented health-care reform means customers face more exposure to prices — and their ultimate bargaining power is the right to walk away ... Gulp.... Read more»

What the Devil won't tell you

Time out on cruelty: Ducey's budget takes itsy-bitsy steps in right direction

Ducey's budget does not put us on a path toward a moderate future. Arizona still has a smoldering hole where the empathy goes. But for him, this budget, with its nods toward education, is practically a drum circle. I'll take it, praise the light and implore voters to make more structural changes in how Arizona operates. ... Read more»

Report: Child care costs rival in-state college tuition in Arizona

Infant child care in Arizona costs an average of $9,437 a year, rivaling in-state college tuition and putting care out of reach for many families, according to a recent report. And Arizona’s costs were on the low end when compared to the rest of the nation, with infant care costs in Washington, D.C., reaching $22,631 annually.... Read more»

Brewer, advocates: Larger welfare crisis looms if federal shutdown lingers

While the governor has restored welfare payments to families whose checks were hung up by the federal shutdown, she's warning that a larger crisis looms. Food stamp payments that 1.1 million Arizonans rely on wouldn't go out if the impasse continues into November, she says. ... Read more»