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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...

This brief summarizes findings from a random assignment impact study of Wise Guys, a long-standing, widely implemented curriculum designed to help adolescent males make responsible decisions about their sexual behavior. Nationwide, boys report higher rates of sexual risk behaviors than girls do. In addition, becoming a father as a teenager is associated with completing fewer years of schooling and being less likely to graduate from high school...

Several ACF programs interact with justice-involved parents and youth in an effort to promote economic self-sufficiency and social well-being for the individuals and their families. Across ACF, we are implementing rigorous research and evaluation projects to better understand how to serve this population.

Individual Placement and Support (IPS) is a model for helping people who have serious mental illness find employment. There is a good deal of evidence showing the model’s success, but less is known about the model’s effectiveness with those who have other types of disabilities and health conditions, such as physical disabilities or less severe types of mental illness...

The Tribal HPOG 2.0 program supports demonstration projects that provide TANF recipients and other low-income individuals with the opportunity to obtain education and training for occupations in the healthcare field that pay well and are expected to either experience labor shortages or be in high demand. NORC at the University of Chicago is leading a comprehensive implementation and outcome evaluation of the Tribal HPOG 2.0 Program...

Home visiting aims to support expectant parents and families with young children by offering them “resources and skills to raise children who are physically, socially, and emotionally healthy and ready to learn” (HRSA, 2019). Although the characteristics of the families served, and the service components delivered, vary by evidence-based home visiting model, problematic substance use is commonly one of the many outcome areas addressed by home visitors in the course of their engagement...

The Breaking Barriers program, based in San Diego, California, provided employment services to lower-income individuals with disabilities. 

MDRC carried out a random assignment impact evaluation of the program, funded by the U.S. Department of Labor, in order to assess the effectiveness of the program at improving employment outcomes for program participants. Findings from that evaluation Visit disclaimer page were released in September 2019...

Home visiting aims to support expectant parents and families with young children by offering them “resources and skills to raise children who are physically, socially, and emotionally healthy and ready to learn” (HRSA, 2019). Although the characteristics of the families served, and the service components delivered, vary by evidence-based home visiting model, problematic substance use is commonly one of the many outcome areas addressed by home visitors in the course of their engagement...

Savings and assets play an important role in economic stability and upward mobility for families with low incomes. To help households with low incomes build assets, the federal government launched the Assets for Independence (AFI) program, authorized by Congress in 1998. This program funded individual development accounts (IDAs) that matched personal savings for assets such as a first home, capital to start a business, or higher education and training...

This tip sheet shares lessons learned by the Building Bridges and Bonds (B3) study thus far so that other programs can consider implementing these approaches to encourage father engagement.