The fact sheets examine the transition to adulthood for two groups of youth using the National Longitudinal Survey of Youth, 1997 cohort. Low-income African Americans are compared to low-income white youth, and youth from low-income "high-work" families are compared to low-income youth from moderate-work and nonworking (i.e., low-work) families. Low-income African American youth are vulnerable to lower employment and earnings despite comparable levels of high school education and lower risk-taking behaviors. Low-income youth from high-work families show stronger connections to school or work compared to youth from low-work families, but have comparable employment and earnings during the transition to adulthood.
Low-income African American youth engage in fewer risky behaviors than low-income white youth, a new Urban Institute analysis of federal data reveals. This research on young blacks is part of a collection of eight brief studies on vulnerable youth, risky behavior, and the transition to adulthood.
To pay for college, many low- and moderate-income students and their families rely on financial aid and savings. But how students and families save—and in whose name—affects both the tax consequences and the impact of savings on financial aid. Not saving in a tax-preferred account can raise the out-of-pocket costs of college by thousands of dollars. Alternately, saving for college can result in tax penalties if families do not use tax-preferred savings for education.
Timothy Ross identifies the obstacles frustrating service coordination and details ways to strengthen the fragile web connecting the many systems involved in protecting foster youth. Child welfare agencies often have responsibility for a child when a family crisis arises, but not the authority or capacity to resolve it without cooperation from other government divisions. When complex systems and bureaucracies have overlapping jurisdiction, fine-tuned coordination is the exception and not the rule.
This brief examines the potential effects of health care reform on the more than 25 million children who currently have coverage under Medicaid or the Children's Health Insurance Program (CHIP). Increased parental coverage will help these children since many have uninsured parents with unmet health needs. However, proposals to move these children into a new health insurance exchange could make them worse off through the potential loss of benefits and legal protections and possible exposure to higher cost-sharing; alternatively, if reimbursement rates are higher in the exchange than paid under Medicaid and CHIP, children's access to providers could improve.
Mary Cunningham, author of "Preventing and Ending Homelessness—Next Steps," answers five questions about how to combat homelessness. Evidence-based approaches have cut homelessness among chronically homeless single adults and new strategies are now being adopted to help homeless families. Investing in proven strategies is crucial as the economic crisis puts more people at risk of ending up in shelters and threatens to reverse the progress communities have made toward ending and preventing homelessness.
The 15th annual Fact Book is a comprehensive data source for indicators of child well-being in the District of Columbia. Over 50 data indicators are tracked over time. This publication provides a broad perspective on the status of children and youth in the District. We seek to inform and educate our readers about the issues affecting children and their families in the District. We encourage community residents, policy makers, professionals, and others who work with and/or on behalf of children and families to create conditions that foster the optimal health and development of our children.
In this Washington Post commentary, Institute Fellow Harry Holzer suggests ways to help those most adversely affected by the economic downturn—low-income single mothers, disadvantaged adults, youths, and their families.
Older adults often are left out of policy conversations on poverty because many believe that relatively few of them experience economic hardship. Yet an updated measure of poverty indicates that the rate for adults ages 65 and older matches the rate for children. The Economic Recovery package under consideration includes some provisions that would benefit older adults, but more could be done. One-time payments for those receiving welfare and increases in food assistance benefits especially would help some poor older adults. Investments in the job skills of those who want to work should also be considered.