Reports are free of charge, and may be downloaded from this page.

Maryland's Child Support Pass-Through Policy: Exploring Impacts on TCA Families
(October 2021) Haley Smith & Lauren A. Hall

This is the first report to examine the initial effects of Maryland’s pass-through policy that went into effect July 2019. We find that TCA families received $2.3 million in passed-through child support during the initial months of implementation, but SNAP benefits declined for some recipients. 

Participation in Federally Defined Work Activities across Maryland
(September 2019) Alyssa Gross & Letitia Logan Passarella

In order to gain a better understanding of the most common federally defined work activities, this brief examines the activities in which work-eligible adult recipients participated during SFY 2018, including the number of hours of participation in those activities. The appendix of the report includes one-page summaries for each jurisdiction.

The Role of Education in Outcomes for Former TCA Recipients
(July 2019) Rebecca McColl & Letitia Logan Passarella

This brief examines all work-eligible adult recipients whose cases closed during federal fiscal year (FFY) 2013 (n=15,038). We examine demographic characteristics and participation in education-related work activities as well as returns to the TCA program and employment during the five years after exit by the adult recipients’ education levels.

Opportunity Youth Receiving TANF
(June 2019) Lisa Thiebaud Nicoli

This brief examines 5,967 youth—that is, adult recipients ages 18 to 24—who received TANF in state fiscal year (SFY) 2016, comparing them to the 19,496 adult recipients who were at least 25 years old. We follow these individuals for at least two years and explore their participation in work activities while receiving TANF and their employment and earnings after their cases close.

Does Short-Term Employment Retention Affect Subsequent Employment & Earnings?
(March 2018) Lisa Thiebaud Nicoli

In this brief, we examine employment and earnings outcomes for three years after case closure for Temporary Cash Assistance (TCA) clients in two different groups. One group retained employment for three months following case closure, and the other group did not retain employment. In each year after case closure, those who retained employment were more likely to work, and they earned more too. However, some of the gap in earnings is explained by the fact that those who retained employment were more likely to work all four quarters in a year. Additionally, the retained employment group was more likely to have worked before receiving TCA and earned more before receiving TCA as well.

15 Years Later: Long-term Outcomes for Families Leaving Welfare
(February 2017) Lisa Thiebaud Nicoli, Elizabeth Gleason,
& Letitia Logan Passarella

This report provides a comprehensive look at early Temporary Cash Assistance (TCA) leavers in Maryland over a 15-year span of time. Specifically, we examine outcomes for a sample of families who exited the TCA program from October 1996, the first month of TANF implementation in Maryland, through March 2000. We provide a profile of these early leavers and examine 15 years of their employment and earnings outcomes as well as their receipt of public assistance, including TCA, Food Supplement, and Medical Assistance. This information provides insight into the long-term experiences of Maryland’s early leavers affected by welfare reform.

Economic Stability after Leaving Welfare
(December 2016) Ann Myatt James & Lisa Thiebaud Nicoli

This brief profiles former TCA clients who achieved economic stability, which we define as stable employment for five years with earnings that either grew over time, consistently exceeded the federal poverty threshold, or remained above the federal poverty threshold for the last two of the five years. Only about 15% of clients in the sample were economically stable. Those who realized economic stability were more likely to live in suburban counties, more educated, and more likely to have worked (and to have higher earnings) before receiving assistance. They were also more likely to work in health care, government, and education immediately after exit.

Who Earns Too Much for TCA? Examining Income Above Limit Case Closures
(June 2016) Ann Myatt James & Letitia Logan Passarella

In this brief, we profile work-eligible Temporary Cash Assistance (TCA) cases that were closed for earnings or child support payments that exceeded the threshold for continuing cash assistance benefits. We focus on these closures, because they may represent families that are able to make successful exits from the TCA program.

Work Activities and Short-term Employment & Earnings among TANF Recipients
(June 2016) Lisa Thiebaud Nicoli

In this brief, we explore the relationship between the work-related activities in which work-eligible customers participate and employment and earnings in the year after their cases close. We focus on the four most common federal core activities: unsubsidized employment, education and training, work experience, and job search.

Bridging the Gap: Welfare a Parental Leave Alternative for Low-Income Families?
(April 2016) Lauren A. Hall

This brief provides a profile of cash assistance cases in Maryland that were designated as a child under one case and therefore received a work exemption known as the Age of Youngest Child (AYC) exemption. In general, the clients on these cases were substantially younger than the typical cash assistance client in the state, many of them were new to the cash assistance program, and just over half were employed before receiving benefits.

Climbing the Ladder? Patterns in Employment and Earnings after Leaving Welfare
(October 2015) Lisa Thiebaud Nicoli

In this brief, we follow a sample of work-eligible clients who exited TCA for five years, examining how their employment and earnings changed over time. More than two in five leavers have a successful employment trajectory, meaning their employment remains high or increases over time. About three in ten leavers have positive earnings trajectories; their earnings are either substantial—that is, consistently above the federal poverty threshold for a three-person family—or they increase over time. We also examine the likelihood of returning to TCA by trajectory, finding that leavers with stable employment and continuous substantial earnings were far less likely to return to TCA.

Welfare Recidivism in Maryland: The Importance of Child Support
(June 2015) Lauren A. Hall & Letitia Logan Passarella

This study examines the relationship between child support receipt in Maryland and returns to Temporary Cash Assistance (TCA). Families who received child support after leaving TCA were significantly less likely to return to welfare. Although returns to welfare were reduced even among families with higher earnings, receiving child support provides a larger reduction in recidivism for very low-income families. Additionally, among families who received child support, those who returned received a substantially smaller amount.

Industries among Employed Welfare Leavers
(February 2014) Lisa Thiebaud Nicoli, Letitia Logan Passarella, & Catherine E. Born

In this brief, we explore a different approach to helping clients find employment, focusing on ten industries in which recent welfare leavers work. We examine the retention and earnings outcomes of the five most common industries in which welfare leavers work—administrative & support services, general retail, professional & technical services, restaurants, and outpatient health care—as well as five industries that we have identified as promising—education, nursing homes, nonprofits, hospitals, and government.

Employment Among Maryland’s TCA Leavers: Examining the Role of the Recession
(November 2013) Letitia Logan Passarella, Sarah Williamson, & Catherine E. Born

This report compares the post-exit employment of three cohorts of leavers: 1) leavers in 1998, when the economy was good and jobs were plentiful; 2) leavers in 2001, during the mild recession; and 3) leavers in 2008, at the height of the Great Recession. We find that leavers in 1998 were significantly more likely to work after exit than leavers in 2001 or 2008; but we also find that a client’s human capital is also a predictor of employment.

Welfare Recipients Who Find Good Jobs: Who Are They and What Are Their Outcomes?
(September 2013) Lisa Thiebaud Nicoli, Letitia Logan Passarella, Catherine E. Born

The Maryland Department of Human Resources has focused on moving Temporary Cash Assistance (TCA) clients into good jobs, defined as a job that paid at least $10 per hour for at least 30 hours per week. This report describes the short-term employment and welfare outcomes of TCA clients that obtained a good job.

Child Care Subsidies Among New TCA Families: Baseline Utilization Rates & Outcomes
(February 2013) Letitia Logan Passarella, Catherine E. Born, and Susan Roll

This report examines the use of child care subsidies among newly-approved TANF families. Although the rate of subsidy use was low (38.1%), we found that employment participation was higher for families that received a child care subsidy during the three-year follow-up period.

Maryland RISE: A First Look at Participants, Activities & Outcomes
(June 2012) Correne Saunders, Nick Kolupanowich, Catherine E. Born

This report is the first in a series that describes various aspects of the RISE initiative (Reaching Independence and Stability through Employment) and the persons placed in a work activity in the RISE era. Specifically, this report presents a foundational overview of a sample of more than 10,000 individuals who began an organized work activity between January 2009 and June 2010.

Tri-County Workforce Development:a TANF Initiative in Rural Maryland
(May 2009) Correne Saunders, Pamela C. Ovwigho, Catherine E. Born

Three rural Maryland jurisdictions - Somerset, Wicomico, and Worcester - partnered to create the Tri-County Workforce Development Initiative (TWDI) with the hope that their combined effort would meet the needs of their TANF populations that do not have the advantages typically found in urban centers.

Profile of New Food Supplement Cases Research Brief
(November 2008) Pamela C. Ovwigho, Nicholas Kolupanowich, Catherine E. Born

The growth of the FS caseload has prompted interest in understanding the characteristics and circumstances of families entering the rolls. In this research brief, we utilize administrative data to present a profile of FS entrants.

Characteristics and Service Utilization Patterns of MD Adult Services Customers
(February 2002) Pamela Caudill Ovwigho, Dorothy Ruck, Catherine E. Born

The Office of Adult Services (OAS) of the Community Services Administration, Maryland Department of Human Resources, operates a variety of programs which serve the needs of adults with disabilities, as well as those who are elderly and/or vulnerable. This report presents an analysis of the characteristics and service use patterns (including OAS pograms, TCA and Food Stamps) of individuals who received services from OAS in Maryland at some point during FY 2001.

The Impact 2000 Project: Final Report
(January 2002) Family Welfare Research and Training Group

In 1998, the Baltimore City Department of Social Services and the Baltimore City Community College, with approval from the Maryland Department of Human Resources, began operating a pilot program, Investing My Potential to Attain College Training (IMPACT 2000), targeted at adult recipients of Temporary Cash Assistance (TCA) in Baltimore City. This report examines the results: did TCA customers who took part in this program fare better in the labor market than customers who did not participate?

Utility of MABS and New Hires for Evaluating Welfare-to-Work Vendors
(July 2001)Pamela Caudill Ovwigho, Melinda L. Cordero, Catherine E. Born

This brief examines the the utility of the Maryland Automated Benefits System (MABS) and New Hires data in accessing the outcomes of welfare-to-work placements.

Welfare-to-Work Programs for a Diverse Caseload: Evaluation of Seven Demonstration Projects
(January 2001) Catherine E. Born, Pamela Caudill Ovwigho, Danielle J. Fagan

In the first year of welfare reform in Maryland, the Department of Human Resources, Community Servies Administration, funded seven welfare-to-work demonstration projects specifically designed to serve customers with significant barriers to employment. This report summarizes the results of the evaluation of those programs by the University of Maryland School of Social Work.










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