All Featured Highlights
Feb 07, 2014
| Helly Lee
Congress Enacts Farm Bill After Years of Debate and Negotiations
On January 29th the House passed H.R. 2642, a negotiated agreement between House and Senate Agriculture Committee leaders on the 5-year Farm Bill. On February 4th, the Senate followed suit and also passed the conference report, which the President will soon sign into law. While disagreements over agricultural policy held up the final bill in the last weeks, the nutrition title of the bill, which includes authorization for the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP, formerly Food Stamps) was among the most contentious.
- Jun 25, 2013 | Helly Lee SNAP Works: SNAP Work Requirements and Time Limits Most SNAP recipients are either already working (13 percent of all SNAP recipients) or are not expected to work (68 percent) because they: are children or senior citizens; have a disability; care for a family member who is disabled; or care for a child under six years old while another household member is working. However, SNAP does have several provisions designed to encourage individuals who are not working to enter the workforce.
- Jun 24, 2013 | Lavanya Mohan and Elizabeth Lower-Basch The Unfinished Work of "Making Work Pay": Expanding the EITC for Childless Workers
- Jun 18, 2013 | CLASP and YOUNG INVINCIBLES ACA Toolkit: Helping Students Understand Health Care Reform and Enroll in Health Insurance ACA Toolkit, InFocus and Recorded Webinar - Helping Students Understand Health Care Reform and Enroll in Health Insurance
- Apr 15, 2013 | Elizabeth Lower-Basch, Julie Strawn and Patrick Reimherr Comments on Education and Family Tax Benefits CLASP submits comments on family and education tax credits to the Education and Family Benefits Working Group, House Committee on Ways and Means as part of the committee's work to review possible changes to the federal income tax system.
- Jun 21, 2013 | Helly Lee Farm Bill Fails in the House: Would Have Wreaked Havoc on SNAP
- Jun 26, 2013 | Elizabeth Lower-Basch Why the Failure of the Farm Bill Was Good for Low-Income Families (Huffington Post Feature) Last week, the House of Representatives rejected the Farm Bill by a 195-234 vote. The bill, which usually enjoys support from both sides of the aisle, was defeated by an unlikely -- and bi-partisan -- coalition of those who opposed the deep cuts of more than $20 billion to the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP, formerly food stamps) and those who thought that the bill did not go far enough in cutting nutrition programs and agricultural subsidies.
- Feb 01, 2013 | Helly Lee Research Shows Long-Lasting Benefits of EITC The EITC is a widely successful program that has been shown to help lift families above poverty and contribute to the short-, intermediate- and long-term support of low-income families.
- Nov 06, 2012 | Helly Lee Removing Red Tape: New Strategies for Strengthening the Safety Net The Coalition for Access and Opportunity, of which CLASP is a co-convener, and the New America Foundation hosted an event on Removing Red Tape: New Strategies for Strengthening the Safety Net. This event focused on the critical role safety net programs play in supporting families and individuals facing difficult financial situations a and ways that these programs could be improved.
- Nov 06, 2012 | Coalition for Access and Opportunity Data Sharing in Public Benefit Programs: An Action Agenda for Removing Barriers This paper from the Coalition for Access and Opportunities highlights opportunities for the federal government to eliminate or minimize administrative obstacles to data sharing that will improve access to government benefits and services for the people who need them. It offers suggestions to reduce the duplicative work that overwhelms state and local agency staff who help consumers apply for public benefits. It also presents important avenues to maximize federal investments in human services when budgets are tight.
- Sep 24, 2012 | Abigail Newcomer and Amy Ellen Duke-Benfield Benefits Access for College Completion CLASP and AACC Partner with Seven Community Colleges to Expand Student Access to Financial Resources This week, seven community colleges, CLASP and the American Association of Community Colleges announced the beginning of the implementation phase of Benefits Access for College Completion (BACC), a three-year initiative that will test innovative approaches to reducing the gap between financial aid and the cost of attending college in order to increase the number of students who earn postsecondary credentials.
- May 17, 2012 | Stan Dorn and Elizabeth Lower-Basch Moving to 21st-Century Public Benefits: Emerging Options, Great Promise, and Key Challenges Currently, millions of needy individuals and families do not receive some or all of the benefits for which they are eligible. In many cases, this is due to the complicated and burdensome processes involved in demonstrating that an applicant has met all eligibility requirements and in recertifying this information on a regular basis. Written for the Coalition for Access and Opportunity, this paper illustrates how sharing data and basing eligibility decisions on existing information can cut administrative costs, help more families in need of assistance access benefits and strengthen programs.
- Feb 01, 2012 | Elizabeth Lower-Basch Unemployment Insurance Drug Testing: A Bad Cure in Search of a Problem By the end of this month, Congress must again act to extend federal unemployment insurance (UI) benefits, or millions of workers will lose access to this vital lifeline. In December, the House of Representatives proposed to attach a provision to the extension that would allow states to require workers to take a drug test before receiving benefits.
- Nov 02, 2011 | Stan Dorn How Human Services Programs and Their Clients Can Benefit from National Health Reform Legislation On Jan. 1, 2014, most health care coverage expansions included in the health care reform law, the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA), will take effect. The ACA requires each state to use a single integrated, user friendly eligibility process that draws on existing data in real time for eligibility determination, enrollment and retention in both of these programs. This paper, written by Stan Dorn for the Coalition for Access and Opportunity, highlights the opportunities to use the ACA to leverage improvements in eligibility systems for human services programs.
- Jan 12, 2011 | Elizabeth Lower-Basch and Abigail Newcomer Federal Funding for Integrated Service Delivery: A Toolkit These briefs describe federal programs identified as possible funding sources for one or more components of integrated service delivery, including benefit access, workforce development and financial literacy services.
- Sep 22, 2010 | Elizabeth Lower-Basch Audio Conference: Game Change - Health Reform Allows Enrollment in Other Benefits to Leapfrog Health care reform has the potential to dramatically change the way low-income individuals and families apply for and receive other benefits, such as nutritional assistance and the earned income tax credit. The Coalition to Promote Access and Opportunity hosted an audio conference with some of the nation's leading experts on this topic.
- May 27, 2010 | CLASP Audioconference The Public Benefits Boost: New Strategies for Increasing Take-Up Learn what non-profits and states are doing to promote benefits acess from Frieda Molina, Deputy Director of MDRC, Ruth Kennedy, Program Director of Louisiana's CHIP program, and Linda Schmidt, Michigan's Poverty Policy Director
- Mar 18, 2010 Work Supports Resource List A series of articles describing the current state of our patchwork safety net, and proposing ways that we can begin stitching up the holes.
- Sep 03, 2009 | CLASP Audioconference Building Public-Private Partnerships in Human Services: Inside the New York Back to School Benefit Example
- Jun 02, 2009 | Elizabeth Lower-Basch and Mark Greenberg Single Mothers in the Era of Welfare Reform The 1990s welfare reform and expansion of work supports caused an historic increase in the share of single mothers who were working. This chapter examines the policy changes of the 1990s and since along with the subsequent employment and earnings outcomes for single mothers. It considers how the policy changes affected both employment levels and job quality and discusses implications for next steps for federal and state policies. This chapter is from the 2009 LERA Research Volume, The Gloves-off Economy: Workplace Standards at the Bottom of America's Labor Market, A. Bernhardt, H. Boushey, L. Dresser, and C. Tilly, eds., Champaign IL: Labor and Employment Relations Association, pp. 163--190. Copyright 2008 by the Labor and Employment Relations Association; Champaign, IL. Reprinted with permission. The volume is available through Cornell University Press.
- Mar 26, 2009 | Neil Ridley Work Sharing--an Alternative to Layoffs for Tough Times At a time of rising unemployment, work sharing programs provide an alternative to layoffs and have benefits for workers, employers and the government. These programs should be expanded and more states should adopt them. This paper describes work sharing and the opportunity for federal action to expand its use.
- Mar 20, 2009 | Elizabeth Lower-Basch Opportunities in the Recovery Act for Income Support for Low-Income Women and Children This presentation analyzes ways that funds provided under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 can be used to improve income supports for low-income women and children. It focuses on the TANF Emergency Contingency Fund and the Unemployment Insurance Modernization Act.
- Apr 09, 2008 | Elizabeth Lower-Basch Tax Credits and Public Benefits: Complementary Approaches to Supporting Low-Income Families Tax credits and public benefits are complementary approaches to supporting low-income families; policy makers do not need to choose between them. By understanding the advantages and disadvantages of both mechanisms, advocates and policy makers can better choose the right tool for the job at hand, rather than adopting a one-size fits all approach.