Family Economic Stability and its Link to Child Welfare – Resolution

Family economic stability is critical to the the development of children. Prevent Child Abuse America has taken a position on this issue.

A Resolution on Family Economic Stability and its Link to Child Welfare

Whereas, the number of people living in poverty in the United States increased by 1.3 million people from 2000 to 2001 (32.9 million impoverished in 2001 vs. 31.6 million in 2000), after falling for four straight years.1

Whereas, an estimated 11 million children (16 percent of children living in families) were living in poverty in 2001.2

Whereas, children living in families with annual incomes below $15,000 are 22 times more likely to be abused and 44 times more likely to be neglected than children living in families with annual incomes greater than $30,000.3

Whereas, welfare-to-work programs that included financial incentives for finding, keeping, and holding a job improved both employment and family income.4

Whereas, research suggests that more generous welfare benefits are associated with a decrease in child neglect and out-of-home care.5

Therefore, be it resolved, that Prevent Child Abuse America supports:

Adding poverty reduction as one of the purposes of Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) to help improve family economic stability.

Providing and coordinating a comprehensive set of services including education and vocational training, substance abuse rehabilitation, housing services, health insurance, domestic violence, and child welfare services, among others to help bring low-income families to self-sufficiency.

Broadening the set of activities that fulfill TANF work requirements to include mental health or substance abuse treatment, parent support groups, and home-visiting programs and related family support programs, thereby enabling parents to access the resources critical to the well-being of their children.

Funding further research on the relationship between welfare reform and child maltreatment, as well as the effects of welfare-to-work programs on the well-being of children.

Providing high quality child care to families on TANF, thereby providing children a safe and nurturing environment while their parents are at work.


  1. Bernstein, Robert. (2002) “Poverty Rate Rises, Household Income Declines, Census Bureau Reports”. U.S. Census Bureau, 2002.
  2. U.S. Census Bureau. (2000). America’s Children: Key National Indicators of Well-Being, 2000. U.S. Census Bureau, March Current Population Survey. Available online:
  3. Sedalk, A.J. and Broadhurst, D.D. (1996). Third National Incidence Study of Child Abuse and Neglect, Final Report. U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.
  4. Zaslow, M.J., K. Moore, J, Brooks, P. Morris, K. Tout, Z. Redd, & C. Emig (2002). “Experimental Studies of Welfare Reform and Children.” The Future of Children.
  5. Paxson, Christina and Jane Waldfogel. (1999). “Work, Welfare, and Child Maltreatment.” National Bureau of Economic Research Cambridge, MA: NBER.

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