Legal and Ethical Issues Concerning Welfare reform
Dr. Jonathan Christensen
MG260: Business Law I
* “I think we should acknowledge that some welfare programs in the past were not well designed and in some cases did encourage dependency.…” President Barrack Obama
The beginning of welfare in the 1930’s to President Clinton’s welfare reform in the 1990’s
A. Why did President Franklin find a need to begin welfare in the U.S.A?
B. What welfare did for America and who it helped?
C. How President Clinton reformed welfare, and why.
D. How effective President Clintons changed towards welfare has been.
I. President Franklin felt the ...view middle of the document...
The Welfare wave
“I think we should acknowledge that some welfare programs in the past were not well designed and in some cases did encourage dependency.…” President Barrack Obama
In the 1930's during the Great Depression, millions of people had lost their jobs. High numbers of fathers left their families and fled elsewhere, leaving their families to survive by their own means. Before the Great Depression, community charities helped the poor and needy, but the downfall of the economy hit everyone hard, and the people that helped the poor now had a need to achieve their own survival. Schools began to close, families were left homeless, wandering the streets. The elderly suffered because they had no money to live on. While Franklin D. Roosevelt rushed to create more jobs, he also began to back an idea that would give aid to poor children and other dependent people.
In President Franklin’s State of the Union address, he included that he planned on creating old-age insurance program, federal unemployment and benefits for dependent people and poor single mothers with children. Welfare finally became a federal responsibility under the Social Security Act on August 18, 1935. This act made is so that states had to contribute one-third that the federal government gave to needy, dependent children, as well as old people, crippled children and the needy blind. States had the power to right the programs’ eligibility and benefit level. This did not create equality and at first did not help all the people that truly needed it. Over the years strong resentment grew, as the welfare system funding grew larger in the federal expenditure. The program that upset people the most was the “Aid to families with Dependent Children,” (AFDC) because the average working person was upset that an able body citizen lived off the federal system they paid into.
On August 22, 1996 President Bill Clinton signed the Welfare Reform Act into law. The guidelines for The Welfare Reform Act were stricter than any other government-assisted plans, which made it complicated for a few people to be eligible. A person might receive benefits on the program and possibly cash assistance if he or she was eligible. With the cash assistance program there is a cap in place on the length of time a person can receive the assistance.
The effectiveness of the welfare reform act has encouraged families and single parent homes to find work. Welfare rates have been down since January 1993. The "Work First and Personal Responsibility Act of 1996" encourages recipients to find employment within a certain time limit. Recipients are required to be employed within the two years of receiving aid. After five years of being on welfare with or without a job recipients benefits cease completely. There is an article on USA Today of a single mother with three kids who was forced to find work. She struggled, and was even forced to mow lawns to try and make ends meet. After struggling...