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Chapter 16 - Chapter 16 Welfare and Education Policy...

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Chapter 16- Welfare and Education Policy: Providing for Personal Security and Need Poverty is a large and persistent problem in America Welfare policy has been a partisan issue Social welfare programs are designed to reward and foster self-reliance or to provide  benefits to those individuals who are truly in need Americans favor social insurance programs over public assistance programs A prevailing principle in the US is equality of opportunity, which in terms of policy is most  evident in the area of public education Poverty in America: The Nature of the Problem Broadest sense: Social welfare policy includes any effort by government to improve social  conditions Narrower sense: social welfare policy refers to government programs that help individuals  meet basic human needs, including food, clothing and shelter The Poor: Who and How Many? Poverty line:  o The annual cost of a thrifty food budget for an urban family of four, multiplied by  three to include the cost of housing, clothes, and other necessities Children are one of the largest groups of poor in America o Live in single parent families, usually with the mother “The feminization of poverty” o Single-parent, female-headed families are roughly five times as likely as two-income  families to fall below the poverty line Minority group members
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o Twice as many African Americans and Hispanics live below the poverty line Geographically concentrated o Somewhat more prevalent in rural areas “The other America” o Suburbanites are more removed from it, many of them have no sense of the  impoverished conditions Living in Poverty: By Choice or Chance Most poor Americans are in their situation as a result of circumstance The Politics and Policies of Social Welfare Negative Government o Holds that government governs best by staying out of people’s lives , giving them as  much freedom as possible to determine their own pursuits and encouraging them to  become self-reliant Great Depression changed outlook on negative government Positive Government o The idea that government intervention is necessary in order to enhance personal  liberty and security when individuals are buffeted by economic and social forces  beyond their control Transfer payments o Government benefits given directly to individual recipients Entitlement programs o Any individual who meets criteria for eligibility is entitled to the benefit Individual-benefit programs fall into two broad groups o Social insurance programs 
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o Public assistance programs Social Insurance Program Two major programs: o Social security o Medicare Social insurance o
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