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Subsidized and Transitional Employment Demonstration (STED), 2010-2021

Project Overview

This project will evaluate subsidized and transitional employment approaches for critical low-income populations, potentially including welfare recipients and low-income non-custodial parents. The project will examine subsidized employment strategies designed to address two distinct goals: (1) provide work-based income support for people who are not able to find regular, unsubsidized jobs; and 2) to improve the employability of disadvantaged groups. These strategies build upon approaches that have demonstrated empirical effectiveness in previous studies, test new and innovative interventions designed to demonstrate promising program components, and adapt to current policy environments at the federal, state, and local levels.

The project began with a short-term analysis of what is known about existing or previous approaches to subsidized employment, including transitional jobs, especially within the context of current TANF policies and requirements as well as efforts under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act.

Eight sites are participating in STED:

  • Goodwill of North Georgia (Atlanta, GA) (DOL Enhanced Transitional Jobs Demonstration grantee)
  • Office of Economic and Workforce Development (San Francisco, CA) (DOL Enhanced Transitional Jobs Demonstration grantee).
  • Los Angeles County Department of Public Social Services
  • San Francisco City and County Agency for Human Services
  • New York City Center for Economic Opportunity
  • Bridges & Pathways (Chicago DFSS)
  • Minnesota Subsidized Employment Program
  • Paycheck Plus (Atlanta, GA)

Random assignment is ongoing in all sites. Over the next year, the STED team will continue random assignment, and data collection will continue with the in-program survey and, where appropriate, the 12-month follow-up. A summary report outlining the seven STED programs and five additional ETJD programs will be released in late 2015. The goal of this evaluation is to increase our knowledge about the efficacy of subsidized employment programs.

The evaluation is being conducted MDRC and its subcontractors, Branch Associates, Decision Information Resources (DIR) and MEF Associates.

The point of contact is Girley Wright.

  • A More Generous Earned Income Tax Credit for Singles: Interim Findings from the Paycheck Plus Demonstration in Atlanta

    Published: March 16, 2020

    Employment and wages have been rising over the last several years of the recovery from the Great Recession that ended in 2009. But the recent wage increases are not enough to offset decades of stagnating or even falling wages for many groups of low-wage U.S. workers. A central policy question is how to ensure that economic growth is shared more widely and that people who work are not poor. The Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) is one option...

  • Can Subsidized Employment Programs Help Disadvantaged Job Seekers? A Synthesis of Findings from Evaluations of 13 Programs

    Published: March 4, 2020

    Even in a strong economy, some job seekers struggle to find and keep jobs. These individuals often have limited work experience, few educational credentials and job skills, and other characteristics such as criminal records or primary caretaking responsibilities that make it difficult for them to compete in the labor market. For decades, government entities, private foundations, and nonprofit organizations have developed programs to help disadvantaged job seekers...

  • The Subsidized and Transitional Employment Demonstration: Cost Analysis of the Minnesota Subsidized and Transitional Employment Demonstration

    Published: January 8, 2020

    The Minnesota Subsidized and Transitional Employment Demonstration (MSTED) is testing the effectiveness of subsidized employment for individuals enrolled in the Minnesota Family Investment Program (MFIP), Minnesota’s Temporary Assistance for Needy Families program, who were unable to find employment after participating in the state’s existing welfare- to-work program. MFIP employment counselors, who work with adults expected to meet the federal work activity requirements...

  • The Subsidized and Transitional Employment Demonstration: Cost Analysis of the STEP Forward Program

    Published: January 8, 2020

    STEP Forward was a voluntary program in San Francisco that aimed to connect low-income job seekers to the labor market by using public funds to temporarily subsidize individuals’ wages, known as subsidized employment, with the goal of ultimately increasing permanent unsubsidized employment among this population. The program was operated by the Human Services Agency of San Francisco (HSA) under the umbrella of JOBsNOW!, HSA’s broader subsidized employment initiative...

  • Engaging Young Men Involved in Chicago’s Justice System: A Feasibility Study of the Bridges to Pathways Program

    Published: December 4, 2019

    This report presents findings from a feasibility evaluation of the Bridges to Pathways (Bridges) program. Bridges was a program for young men in Chicago between the ages of 17 and 21 years who were involved with the criminal or juvenile justice system and lacked a high school credential. The program offered intensive mentoring and case management, as well as the opportunity to earn a high school credential, attend social-emotional learning workshops, and participate in a subsidized internship...

  • Testing Two Subsidized Employment Models for TANF Recipients: Final Impacts and Costs of the Los Angeles County Transitional Subsidized Employment Program

    Published: September 5, 2019

    Securing employment in a competitive labor market can be difficult for job seekers with limited education or work experience, especially if they are single parents or caring for young children. Some public assistance programs — Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) programs, for example...

  • The Subsidized and Transitional Employment Demonstration: Implementation and Early Impacts of the Minnesota Subsidized and Transitional Employment Demonstration

    Published: August 22, 2019

    Recipients of Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) often face barriers such as limited education and work experience, health issues including substance abuse problems, and other obstacles that stand in the way of finding employment. In an effort to help these individuals gain work experience, boost their earnings, and eventually...

  • Findings from In-Depth Interviews with Participants in Subsidized Employment Programs

    Published: January 11, 2019

    Subsidized employment and transitional jobs programs seek to increase employment and earnings among individuals who have not been able to find employment on their own. First-hand accounts of participants’ experiences in these programs can inform efforts to improve long-term employment outcomes for various “hard-to-employ” populations.

    This study is part of two federally funded multisite projects — the Department of Labor’s Enhanced Transitional Jobs Demonstration (ETJD) and the Department of Health and Human Services’ Subsidized and Transitional Employment Demonstration (STED) — testing various subsidized employment models. These programs targeted a variety of disadvantaged populations, including welfare recipients, people returning to the community from prison, and low-income parents who do not have custody of their children (“noncustodial” parents, usually fathers) and who owe child support. The projects tested programs that enhanced the subsidized job model with case management and other support services, job-readiness training, and job search assistance intended to help participants move into unsubsidized employment.

  • The Enhanced Transitional Jobs Demonstration: New Perspectives on Creating Jobs – Final Impacts of the Next Generation of Subsidized Employment Programs

    Published: December 11, 2018

    This report presents the final impacts from the U.S. Department of Labor’s Enhanced Transitional Jobs Demonstration (ETJD), which included two sites that are part of ACF’s Subsidized and Transitional Employment Demonstration (STED). ETJD tested seven transitional jobs programs that targeted people recently released from prison or unemployed parents who did not have custody of their children. The ETJD programs were “enhanced” in various ways to address the shortcomings of previous programs. Two of the ETJD grantees which served non-custodial parents, Atlanta and San Francisco, were evaluated as part of the STED study. The two evaluations – STED and ETJD – closely coordinated beyond the shared sites, including shared reports, common data collection instruments, and other ongoing collaboration.

  • Tribal Solutions: Subsidized Employment Programs Serving American Indians and Alaska Natives

    Published: September 25, 2018

    People served by public assistance programs such as Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) often have difficulty finding jobs in the competitive labor market. This report describes the ways in which eight TANF...

More Reports on this Project